The sophomore curriculum at Wamogo High School is centered on world literature (after CAPT practice, of course). I have aligned our texts to meet the Common Core standards (Reading #6: Analyze a particular point of view or cultural experience reflected in a work of literature from outside the United States, drawing on a wide reading of world literature)
This past April, our thematic approach was “Children Living in Conflict”. They had read Night by Elie Wiesel in conjunction with the social studies department’s unit on the Holocaust. We book-ended the unit with films opening with The Power of One and concluding with the film Hotel Rwanda. There were a series of journal responses to films and an SAT prompt (“Will the 21 Century be marked by genocides?”) as assessments. Our goal was to have students read in small lit circles. For reading during the unit, we offered a series of texts to our sophomores and provided six-eight classes of silent sustained reading.
These texts were listed on Livebinders.com (click here).
We already owned:
The Kite Runner*-Hosseini
Nectar in a Sieve**-Markandaya
My Forbidden Face**-Latifa
PURCHASED USED (5-20 copies of each)
A Long Way Gone-Beah
A Thousand Splendid Suns– Hosseini
Falling Leaves– Mah
First They Killed My Father-Loung
Say You’re One of Them- Akpan
Snow Flower and the Little Fan-See
The Power of One-Courtenay
We Wish to Inform You that Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with our Families-Gourevitch
What is the What-Eggers
Originally, the idea was to offer the books already in the department’s book room as independent reading. I was able to secure 5-20 copies of all other titles during the school year, so that we were able to expand the offerings by interest and by reading level.
In preparing this unit the previous year, I had planned to offer a variety of texts -particularly a variety of reading levels. My Forbidden Face is a low reading level text, but the subject matter is appropriate for 10th grade students. Persepolis allowed some students to try a graphic novel; the text is also excellent for visual learners. Both of these books are rarely available in used book locations.
The most popular texts were A Long Way Gone, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and The Kite Runner. Fortunately, these titles are very plentiful in the used book market. There are now enough Kite Runner texts to give us the option to change this unit to include a core text. I could not find enough A Thousand Splendid Suns, and several students purchased their own copies! That will be one of the targeted texts this summer!
*40 copies already in book room.
**20 copies purchased at full price for this unit July 2010