Lesson: War Comes to Willy Freeman - Theme

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Lesson Objective

1. Identify and track major themes throughout War Comes to Willy Freeman. 2. Identify and analyze key historical events, plot elements, characters, conflicts, and literary elements in War Comes to Willy Freeman.

Lesson Plan

Do Now:

- Students have 4 minutes to read the passage and answer the questions that follow.  Encourage students to think critically about each questions and find evidence in the passage to support what they say.

-Share out answers and track common ideas.


I Do/We Do:

- First explain what the literary element of theme means.

Steps to determine the theme for a work:

1. Identify the subject of the work.

2. Find important examples of how this subject is involved in novel conflicts, characters, and key events.

3. Identify the insight or truth that was learned about the subject.

• How did the protagonist change?

• What lesson did the protagonist learn from the resolution of the conflict?

4. Write one or more declarative sentence that state what was learned and how it was learned. 

- Model one theme tracker with the idea of War in the novel.

- Have students pick a partner.  Give them a theme to track: freedom, secrecy or courage.  They are to answer the chart just like we did for WAR.  Students have 10 minutes to complete this activity.


Once time is up, call on different groups to be the "teachers" for their theme.  They must give the information they identified and lead the rest of the class to identifying the theme for that topic.



- Students must complete novel study guide.  We will be spending the next few classes reviewing and playing review games.


What went well?

The theme tracker makes it easier for the students to identify a theme they might have overlooked.


What would you change?

If there was more time, I would pick out more passages for the novel that could help to highlight the specific themes.


What needs explanation?

Spend some time talking about what theme is and what it is not.  Be thorough in going over the example with the students before expecting them to do it on their own.

Lesson Resources



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