Lady Capulet Compares Paris to a Book: Students Explain the Metaphor in a Timed Writing Task.

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SWBAT write explanatory texts to examine and convey complex concepts clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content by explaining Lady Capulet's metaphor in a one-page essay.

Big Idea

You shouldn't judge a book by its cover? Lady Capulet disagrees.

Getting Started

5 minutes

In our last class, we read and closely examined Act 1, scene 3. In this scene, Lady Capulet wants Juliet to consider Paris as a future husband, a prospect the Nurse thinks is great. Before starting today's activity, we will review what we learned and discovered from our reading during the class, specifically the adjectives they chose for each characters. These notes will help us approach today's one-page essay because they will remind us of our first impressions of Juliet, her mother, and their relationship.

Writing the Open Response

50 minutes

Last class, we reviewed the conceit in Lady Capulet's speech as we read. Today we will analyze this section more closely. During this hour, students will write a one-page response to this prompt (W.9-10.2 and RL.9-10.2). If they are keeping up in class discussions, they already know the answer to the question and probably even have notes on this passage already.


The purpose of this writing assignment is two-fold: this assignment will assess their understanding of the language after our discussion (assessments without prior explanation and discussion will come later), but more importantly, this assignment will provide a formal opportunity to improve their writing skills, precisely because they already know the answer to the question and can therefore focus primarily on their own writing. They need to write a clear and specific thesis (W.9-10.2a), which they need to defend using relevant textual details from the reading and explain (W.9-10.2b). They should develop at least three paragraphs with clear transitions (W.9-10.2c) and a short conclusions that pulls all their ideas together (W.9-10.2f).


Because we have only read three scenes, it may seem too early for a formal assessment, but I have purposely scheduled a formal writing assignment for this hour. Most of the last week has been spent reading-- class time on the play, and homework on their outside book. It is time for a change. I try to plan for a significant writing assignment at least once a week. Here's a look at what they wrote.

Wrapping Up

5 minutes

Students can hand in their work as they finish. Their homework assignment-- a check in on their outside read-- will be written on the board, so that anyone who finishes early can get started.