My students began setting renderings of chapter one of Of Mice and Men in the previous lesson, and none were able to complete the assignment in one class period. Thus, today I have designated the first half of class as time for them to complete their projects to their satisfaction.
I have listed a few Setting Suggestions on the whiteboard, in order to help my students towards encompassing the entire scene. I am hoping that my students will discover the paradise-like elements of the setting, and might even be tempted to use the word allusion, which is a concept they have met before. I am also hoping that they will notice the time of day--sunset--and possibly explore what that may symbolize.
As my students complete their projects, I am able to circulate the room, informally assessing their work and offering suggestions as necessary (Students Bring Setting to Life).
Giving my students the first half of the period to complete their projects should allow us to move into presentations of their finished results during the second half.
I keep their presentations informal, allowing my students to remain in their seats with their group members, especially since my desks are already arranged in a circle. I ask for volunteers to go first instructing them to simply "walk us through" their depiction and to point out the key details they have included (Sample Setting Depiction). Each presentation should also include either a reading or a paraphrasing of the analysis paragraph (Setting Analysis Paragraph).
Because I am satisfied with the process and production of my students in terms of how they remained engaged and on task, this is an assignment that will glean a set number of participation points rather than rubric-scored points. No student, in fact, has even inquired about points for this project, which I generally take as a good sign.
As students share, there will most likely be overlap in much of why they say, yet I believe it is important that all groups are given the chance to speak. Again, my hope is that my students will recognize the serenity of the setting, even if they remain unsure at this stage as to what can be entirely inferred by it.
The finished products will then be displayed on one of our classroom walls throughout the remainder of our unit, where they can be easily referred back to whenever necessary.