Unit Name: Tortilla  Curtain  by  T.C.

 Boyle Grade Level: 11th  –  12th Subject/Topic Area(s): Language  Arts Time Frame: 4  weeks Class Description/Developmental Needs of Students:
Twenty-­‐eight  students:  with  twenty-­‐five  11  graders  and  three  12  graders.  Including:   -­‐Two  ELL  students  –  both  are  exchange  students  for  one  year  from  foreign  countries,  one  from  Germany  one  from  China.   -­‐Five  students  with  IEPs.   -­‐Seventeen  males  and  eleven  females.  
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STAGE ONE: DESIRED RESULTS ESTABLISHED GOALS (Common Core Standards): G Reading: Literature: Key Ideas
• • RL.11-12.1. Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text, including determining where the text leaves matters uncertain. RL.11-12.2. Determine two or more themes or central ideas of a text and analyze their development over the course of the text, including how they interact and build on one another to produce a complex account; provide an objective summary of the text.

Reading: Literature: Craft and Structure
• RL.11-12.5. Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact. RL.11-12.6. Analyze a case in which grasping a point of view requires distinguishing what is directly stated in a text from what is really meant (e.g., satire, sarcasm, irony, or understatement).

Writing: Text Types and Purposes
• o W.11-12.1. Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence. Introduce precise, knowledgeable claim(s), establish the significance of the claim(s), distinguish the claim(s) from alternate or opposing claims, and create an organization that logically sequences claim(s), counterclaims, reasons, and evidence. Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented. W.11-12.2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content. Develop the topic thoroughly by selecting the most significant and relevant facts, extended definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples appropriate to the audience’s knowledge of the topic. Establish and maintain a formal style and objective tone while attending to the norms and conventions of the discipline in which they are writing. Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the information or explanation presented (e.g., articulating implications or the significance of the topic).

o • o o o


Production and Distribution of Writing
• • W.11-12.4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. W.11-12.5. Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience.

Range of Writing
• W.11-12.10. Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes

UNDERSTANDINGS: U Students  will  understand  the  plot,  characters,  and   basic  themes  in  Tortilla  Curtain.     Students  will  understand  some  connections  between   themes  in  Tortilla  Curtain  and  the  concept  of  the   American  Dream.     Students  will  understand  struggles  and  issues  and   surrounding  legal  and  illegal  immigration  in  the  U.S.   today.     Students  will  better  understand  satire  as  a  literary   device.   KNOWLEDGE: K Students  will  know  the  plight  of  a  modern  immigrant   experience  to  America.       Students  will  know  the  allure  of  the  “American   Dream”.      

ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS: Q Why  should  we  read  Tortilla  Curtain?     How  do  themes  in  Tortilla  Curtain  relate  to  the   concept  of  the  “American  Dream”?     Is  the  treatment  of  illegal  immigrants  in  the  U.S.  fair?          

SKILLS: S Students  will  be  able  to  respond  to  questions  related   to  the  themes  presented  in  Tortilla  Curtain.     Students  will  be  able  to  compare  and  contrast   characters,  themes,  or  symbols  in  the  Tortilla  Curtain.     Students  will  be  able  to  participate  in  a  Socratic   seminar  analyzing  the  text  by  posing  and  answering   substantive  questions.     Students  will  be  able  to  write  an  argument/persuasive   essay  about  an  issue  related  to  US  legal  and  illegal   immigration  laws  in  the  U.S.  today.       Students  will  be  able  to  digitally  respond  on  Edmodo   to  questions  related  to  Tortilla  Curtain  themes,  as   well  as  cite  of  applicable    quotations  from  the  text.  

Students  will  write  a  persuasive  argument  essay  regarding  an   issue  related  to  legal  and  illegal  immigration  in  the  U.S.  today.     They  will  outline,  draft,  edit,  rewrite,  and  submit  a  polished  draft   of  this  argument  essay.     -­‐Three  written  response  assessments  will  be  given  after  the   completion  of  each  Section  of  the  book.    

Classroom  activities:  
  Create  a  KWL  chart  as  a  class  of  what  students  know  and  want  to   know  about  immigration  issues  in  the  US.     Compare  and  contrast  graphic  organizer     Create  graphic  organizer  comparing  and  contrasting  characters,   themes,  ideas  and/or  symbols,  in  Tortilla  Curtain.     Participation  in  Socratic  seminar     Student  driven  Socratic  seminar  discussing  the  book.     Satire  worksheet     Students  will  read  and  complete  a  worksheet  and  participate  in   small  group  work  citing  satirical  devices  used  by  TC  Boyle  in   Tortilla  Curtain.     Read,  Annotate,    then  small  group  discussions  on  the  article   “Rethinking  the  American  Dream”  by  David  Kemp  from  Vanity   Fair,  April  2009,     Participation  in  Classroom  and  pair/share  discussions  on  themes,   symbols,  devices  and  other  literary  analysis  of  Tortilla  Curtain.     Homework:     Book  Blog  postings  –  students  will  post  on  a  Edmodo.com   citations  of  quotations  from  the  text  as  well  as  responses  to   substantive  questions  taken  from  the  text  -­‐  checking  on  reading   comprehension.     Informal  assessments:     Teacher  observations  of  students’  participation  in  larger  class   discussions,  partner  work,  and  small  group  work  in  class.  



STAGE THREE: LEARNING PLAN (UNIT SEQUENCE) LEARNING ACTIVTIES (WHERETO): L 1) Begin  the  unit  with  a  discussion  of  what  students  know  about  immigration?    KWL  chart  with  the  class   what  students  know  about  immigration.        H   2) Present  the  learning  goals  and  essential  questions  for  the  unit,  as  well  as  the  assessment  schedule  and   rubrics  that  will  be  used.  W   3) Unit  plan  will  be  posted  on  Edmodo  as  well  as  subsequent  assignments  for  this  unit.  O   4) Students  will  do  a  daily  quickwrite  answering  compelling  questions  on  topics  related  to  Tortilla   Curtain.E   5) Daily  class  discussion  of  themes  in  Tortilla  Curtain.  R   6) Teacher  will  read  out  loud  on  a  daily  basis,  when  possible,  from  the  book.T   7) Daily  Homework  will  be  posted  on  Edmodo  and/or  handed  out  in  printed  form  at  the  end  of  each  class.   Homework  will  sometimes  include  reading  Tortilla  Curtain.  R   8) Students  will  create  a  graphic  organizer  comparing  and  contrasting  characters,  themes,  ideas,  and/or   symbols  in  Tortilla  Curtain.  R,E   9) Students  will  complete  worksheet  on  satire  and  explore  satirical  elements  in  Tortilla  Curtain.  E   10) Students  will  read,  annotate,  than  hold  small  group  discussions  on  the  article:  “Rethinking  the   American  Dream”  by  David  Kemp.  R   11) Students  will  participate  in  a  Socratic  seminar  posing  and  responding  to  substantive  questions   analyzing  Tortilla  Curtain.R   12) Students  will  watch  informative  short  documentary  videos  on  topics  related  to  immigration  issues  in   the  US.   13) Students  will  write  an  argument/persuasive  essay  with  a  thesis  topic  on  an  issue  related  to  immigration   in  the  U.S.  R,  E   14) Students  will  take  three  written  response  assessments  answering  questions  regarding  each  of  the   three  sections  of  Tortilla  Curtain.  R    



Note: Drake High School follows a block schedule with a forty-five minute classes on Mondays and ninety minute block period classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. MONDAY
Week #1 short period

Week #1 block period

Week #1 block period

Handout  books  to  students.     QUICKWRITE:  When  have  you   struggled  between  what  you   know  is  right  and  then  how   you  behaved  or  acted?       Class  discussion  on  quickwrite   responses     READ  OUTLOUD:  Teacher   read  out  loud  starting  on  page   1  until  the  end  of  the  class   period.           HOMEWORK:  Read  through   Chapter  two  page  29,  and  blog   on  Edmodo  one  Fact  and  one   React  from  the  reading.  

  QUCKWRITE:  What  would  it  be  like  to  cross   the  Mexican  border  illegally?    What  would  it   feel  like?    What  would  it  smell  like?     CLASS  PROJECT:  create  a  KWL  Chart  on   “Immigration  in  the  US”   PAIR/SHARE:  with  partner  review    facts  and   reacts  posted  by  students  on  Edmodo  –   displayed  on  screen  by  teacher     WATCH  video  on  Mexican  border  patrol:   http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/chan nel/border-­‐wars/videos/illegal-­‐crossing/   http://www.pbs.org/pov/alotrolado/   video_classroom3.php       HOMEWORK    Read  through  Chapter  six,  page  97.    Blog  one   quote  from  book  about  a  view  on   immigration.  

  QUICKWRITE:   Who  are  the  main  characters  of  this  book?   What  is  a  labor  exchange?  What  is   Delaney’s  job?     CLASS  DISCUSSION:  “Opposing  forces”   themes,  symbols  and  characters  within   Tortilla  Curtain       READ  OUTLOUD:  As  read  out  loud   Write  down  facts  and  reacts.   Write  down  questions.   Write  down  oppositions.     WATCH:  Story  of  young  Mexican  man  who   lives  in  a  fishing  village  and  decides  to   immigrate  illegally  to  US:   http://www.pbs.org/pov/alotrolado/video_ classroom1.php     Introduce  Argument/Persuasive  essay.   Students  develop  their  thesis  on  one  subject   related  to  issues  surrounding  immigration  in   the  U.S.  today  and  teacher  goes  around  and   checks  in  on  each  student’s  thesis  topic.     Show  student  PPT  of  argument  essay   writing  steps.       HOMEWORK:     Read  through  end  of  Part  One,  page  142.     Book  Blog  Post:  post  one  “opposite”  theme,   character,  or  lifestyle,  from  the  reading  on   Edmodo.  


Week #2 short period

Week #2 block period

Week #2 block period

  READING  ASSESSMENT:   QUICKWRITE:  Write  about  one  example  of  an   opposing  force  that  happens  in  Tortilla  Curtain.   Part  One   Show  rubric  so  students     READ  OUTLOUD:  Tortilla  Curtain  and  discuss   will  understand  the   reading  and  underline  pertinent  passages   scoring  scale.   related  to  opposing  forces.    Read.  Stop.  Discuss.     Share.   Homework:    Begin     building  claims  to   RESEARCH:  In  computer  lab  for  second  half  of   support  thesis   class,  students  digitally  research  claims   statement.   supporting  their  argument  essay  topic.     Minimum  required  is  three.     HOMEWORK:   Read  through  Chapter  Two,   Part  Two,  page  182.    Post  a   quote  on  Edmodo  that  is  a   defining  piece  of  dialogue  from   a  character  and  describe  why.

QUICKWRITE:  What  does  the  controversial   “Wall”  being  built  around  Arroyo  Blanco   represent?   Pass  back  Part  One  assessments  and  discuss.     WORKSHEET  ON  SATIRE:  Read  and  complete   worksheet  on  satirical  devices.     Small  Group  work:  Brainstorm  and  make  a  list  of   satirical  elements,  on  worksheet,  in  Tortilla   Curtain  through  Part  Two.    Share  out.     If  time,  Read  out  and/or  silent  read  of  loud   Tortilla  Curtain     WATCH  short  video  on  Mexican  border  fence:   http://www.pbs.org/pov/alotrolado/   video_classroom3.php     HOMEWORK:     -­‐Read  through    Chapter  seven,  Part  2,  p.239   st -­‐Finish  1  draft  of  argument  essay.

Week #3 short period

Week #3 block period

Week #3 block period

QUICKWRITE:  Discuss  a   satirical  device  that  TC   Boyle  uses  in  Tortilla   Curtain.   st 1  draft  of  argument   essay  is  due.     In  computer  lab   students  digitally  peer   review  and  edit  each   other’s  essays.   HOMEWORK:   Finish  Part  Two,   through  page  257  

READING  ASSESSMENT:  Part  Two   Show  rubric  so  students  will  understand  the   scoring  scale.   In  computer  lab  for  2  half  of  class,  REVISE   argument  essay  based  on  peer  review  and  turn   in  on  Edmodo  for  teacher  feedback.  

QUICKWRITE:   Describe  the  American  Dream.    How  do  you   know  when  you  have  achieved  it?     READ  AND  ANNOTATE  in  class  the  Vanity  Fair   article  entitled  “Rethinking  the  American   Dream”  by  David  Kemp.    Students  focus  on   underlining  different  versions  of  the  American   Dream.     SMALL  GROUP  WORK  –In  groups  of  three  to   four  students  discuss  the  article  and  write  down   five  examples  of  the  American  Dream  through   the  ages.       Class  discussion  of  characters’  from  Tortilla   Curtain  American  Dream.     Read  out  loud  Tortilla  Curtain  and  underline   anything  important  quotes  and  then  discuss   why.     HOMEWORK:  Read  through  Ch.  4,  Part  3,  p.308  

Week #4 short period

Week #4 block period

Week #4 block period

  QUICKWRITE:  What  do   the  coyotes  symbolize   in  Tortilla  Curtain?     What  do  other  animals   symbolize  to  you?     Argument  essays  with   teacher  feedback  are   returned.   In  class,  students  create   graphic  organizer  (such   as  a  Venn  diagram)   comparing  and   contrasting  characters,   themes,  ideas  and/or   symbols,  in  Tortilla   Curtain.  

QUICKWRITE:  Based  on  the  novel  thus  far,  what   are  your  thoughts/ideas/opinions  about  the   writer  T.C.  Boyle?   What  kind  of  person  do  you  think  he  is?   What  conclusions  can  you  draw  or  assumptions   have  you  made  about  him?   Which  character  do  you  think  most  accurately   reflects  the  writer’s  perspective?   Watch  video  about  T.C.  Boyle     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuRjCxCjo1A   • While  watching:  Students  connect   things  that  TC  Boyle  says  with  things   that  they  have  read  in  book.   Read  essay  about  T.C.  Boyle   — Underline  annotate  author’s  point  of   view   Stick  pick  and  choose  students  to  respond  to   class  their  responses.   HOMEWORK:   Finish  last  chapter  of  book  (if  you  haven’t   already)  

READING  ASSESSMENT:  Three   Show  rubric  so  students  will  understand  the   scoring  scale.   st  (1  half  of  class)     Show  MOVIE:  “A  BETTER  LIFE”  (2011)   nd (2  half  of  class)  

HOMEWORK: Finish  polished  drafts  of   argument  essay.   Read  thru  Part  3,    Ch.  8,   page  347  

REFLECTIONS Describe the effectiveness of this lesson in helping students meet the learning goals.
This  lesson  plan  seemed  very  effective  in  helping  students  meet  the  learning  goals  of  this  unit.    In  particular,  the  writing  of  the   persuasive  argument  essay  covered  many  of  the  writing  goals  as  wells  as  the  analysis  of  themes  related  to  the  book  Tortilla  Curtain.     This  students  in  this  class  generally  are  average  to  below  average  students  and  could  have  perhaps  more  effectively  comprehended   the  reading  if  they  were  given  more  time  and  if  I  (the  teacher)  read  more  of  the  book  out  loud  in  class.  

How will you apply what you have learned in future instruction?
In  the  future,  I  would  give  extra  time  to  read  this  novel  (for  groups  of  similar  level  students).      The  timeline  was  a  bit  pushed  and  I   think  that  the  learning  goals  of  this  unit  could  more  effectively  be  covered  with  more  time  for  reading  out  loud  in  class.  The  learning   activities  were  all  effective  in  exploring  more  deeply  themes  and  learning  goals,  so  I  would  use  these  activities  again  in  the  future.