Reflection: Connection to Prior Knowledge The Mysteries of Harris Burdick - Investigating Darkness - Section 1: Introducing the Activity


In an attempt to achieve relevance and to connect to students' prior knowledge, I thought generating a list of things that "scare" us would be a good idea.  

It really wasn't.  Fear is so visceral, it is hard to intellectualize it.  I wanted students to realize that the things that are truly scary are grounded in real life, and the familiarity of the situation (with the spooky twist) is really what is creepy.  However, because I didn't give them anything to read or reflect on before beginning, what I got was a set of knee-jerk responses:  spiders, bees, etc.  While I don't doubt that the students were being honest, I didn't get where I wanted to go.

However, if I circle back to this list after they have read an excerpt from Frankenstein, some Poe, the Monkey's Paw, etc., I imagine that their lists will be very different...and maybe that's something worth examining.


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The Mysteries of Harris Burdick - Investigating Darkness

Unit 6: Unlocking Mood and Other Elements of Horror
Lesson 1 of 18

Objective: SWBAT identify the elements of mystery and horror by analyzing their own work.

Big Idea: Looking at "scary" from the inside out

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