Cornerstone: Comparing Different Views on a Woman's Role in Society (Day 1 of 2)

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SWBAT write an analysis of the language authors use to define woman's role in society by comparing and contrasting two texts.

Big Idea

Students engage in reading a comparing two texts describing a woman's role in society.


10 minutes

Before giving the lesson's activator, I discuss the lessons instructional agenda by using a power point presentation for my visual learners.

Words That Come to Mind…

Students are then asked to write Words That Come To Mind when they think of a woman’s role in marriage.  I will be interested in listening to what student's wrote knowing many of my student's parents are or were never married.  I want them to share their thoughts and beliefs to prepare them for the essay by Judy Brady that they will be reading.  I facilitate a short sharing of words with the class.

Building Knowledge: Viewing Film

10 minutes

The first essay that students' will be reading is entitled, "I Want a Wife"  by Judy Brady.  The author wrote the essay in 1971 which describes the meaning of the word wife from the perspective of one person profoundly unhappy with the role.  It has since been reprinted widely begging the question, is Brady's harsh portrayal of gender roles still relevant today? 

I begin this activity with a short video,, to create a stage for the reading.


Building Knowledge: Vocabulary

10 minutes

Next, I introduce four vocabulary words, RL.9-10.4that I want the students to understand. I'm trying a different approach to teaching vocabulary by using a simple  graphic organizer, Vocab words, that asks students to first define what they think the word means and then what it means in the text.

I then explain that they will be reading, discussing and writing about two different views on a woman's role in society.  I pass out the essay "I Want a Wife" and ask them to read it independently and silently as I read the first three paragraphs out loud until I get to the first two vocabulary words, nurturant attendant.  Because many of my students are struggling readers I model how I would then try to figure out the word's meaning in context within the sentence. Using my docucamera I project the graphic organizer on a screen.  I then write my meaning of the first word in the What it Means in the text box and then ask my students to do the same for the second word.

After they complete that step I ask them to:

  1. read the remainder of the essay and fill out their vocabulary words organizer as they read and, 
  2. underline words that describe the wife Brady wants.


Student Learning Activity

40 minutes

Before giving them the next activity I explain the meaning of "double standard."

In slide #7 of the power point presentation, I Want A Wife, students read as I explain the next activity:

  1. Find evidence, RL.9-10.1, of a double standard of behavior and responsibility. What are the wife's responsibilities?  Spouses responsibilities? Discuss in pairs using Accountable talk as required in SL.9-10.1a.

As I explained in a previous lesson, accountable talk is a discussion expectation which I have recently started with my class.  Each student has a list of discussion starters and comments or accountable talking stems in which they will refer to during their discussions.  I circulate among the students checking for understanding and keeping them engaged in the activity. The discussions will be no longer than 1-2 minutes each.

Next, I introduce the 1851 speech delivered to the Women's Convention in Akron, Ohio by Sojourner Truth, Ain't I A Woman by passing out the speech, and showing a brief video of a reading of the speech (slide # 9).  

Using a venn diagram I then ask students to answer the question: How are the two author's attitudes similar or different?  I first model one similarity and difference by projecting the Venn on a screen and think out loud.  As they fill out the diagram I circulate among them checking for understanding while directing them to evidence in the text.

The final step W.9-10.2 which requires students to examine and convey complex ideas by writing a paragraph answering this question:

  • What words (diction) do Brady and Truth use to define a women’s role in society? How are their attitudes similar or different? What is the author's point of view? RL.9-10.6 Use specific evidence to support your answer.

As the others, I project this activity which is on slide #11, I Want A Wife as I explain the writing assignment.


Wrap Up

5 minutes

Group Share

To support the tasks process of thinking, analyzing and writing, I ask one student to read a loud their paragraph on how the two authors' attitudes and points of view are similar and how they are different.