This is a continuation lesson examining The Story of Ruby Bridges presented in varied media formats. Today's lesson involves students watching the Disney movie "Ruby Bridges". We've already explored the book by Robert Coles, a play put on at our school and a dramatic presentation in the previous lesson. The students have a workbook in which they are keeping track of the likes and difference of each version.
Today, students will be discussing which they think is better- the book or the movie. In today's society, kids are inundated with millions of images but they aren't used to doing the imagining. I love this new standard because I think we, as educators, must acknowledge the influence that media has over our students, but I also think the students need to understand that other forms of media can also be enjoyable. They don't always have to be staring at flashing pictures to enjoy or understand a message. Even though I know students will always choose the movie over the book, I want to- at the very least- have the conversation.
Today's Smart board images are meant to begin that conversation so when they enter the room, they see the Smart board pulled up and some very familiar movie titles and books along with a quick write on their desk.
A note here: I've tried to include movies from books that I'm fairly certain the students have read or heard. For instance, I didn't include Holes because I'm very certain the students would not have read the book.
I give the students a quick write: "Look at these movie titles and tell which you think was better- the book or the movie and why."
After the students finish their quick write, we discuss their thoughts on which is better the book or the movie. To a one all of my students said the movie is always better. Not surprising!! I give my opinions too about books vs movies and my opinion is that the books are usually better.
I tell them that today we're going to watch the movie of Ruby Bridges and we're not really concerned with which is better- we're just concerned with what is the same and what is different. I hand out the movie viewing guide and we begin to watch the movie.
Viewing the movie takes all of my class time and then some, but I want students to get started in their workbooks. We discuss the possibility that the main idea could be the same as the book, the play and the dramatic oration, but that it probably won't be the same as the poem or the quilt.
A really great conversation came from this time as we began to look at why the quilt and poem don't have the same main ideas as the movie, the book or the dramatic presentation. It was fascinating to discuss and question students about such a "grown up" topic such as the passage of time in the different forms of this story. They concluded that since the poem and the quilt were snapshots in time, the main ideas would be different. The other three forms moved through time showing Ruby at different stages of her experience.
After all this enlightening conversation, I decide that the students should complete their workbooks at home as they are now armed with a whole new arsenal of information!!