You are on page 1of 7

UBD—“The Crucible” Stage 1- Identify Desired Results Goal: Students will read The Crucible and study the

justice system that existed during the Salem witch trials as well as Europe during the Early Modern period. Students will explore the fear and doubt that existed within those societies/time periods and relate it to their own lives/the modern world. Students will explore human behaviour and relate it to Arther Miller’s The Crucible. in relation to power/authority, obedience, reactions to fear, the circle of obligation, and conformity. Essential Questions:       Why did Arthur Miller write The Crucible? How can literature reflect the values of a society? How can literature shape the values of a society? What is fear? How do people react when they are fearful of someone/something? What is the danger of ―group think‖ or mob mentality? When should an individual take a stand in opposition to an individual or a larger group? What is meant by ―the common good‖? Who decides what the common good is? Is the common good best for every individual in a society? How do we attend to the common good while respecting individual goals and values?

Understandings:  One of the purposes of The Crucible was to create a historical analogy between the events of the Salem witch hunts in 1692 and the rise of anti-communist hysteria in the 1950s. Literature reflects society’s good and bad values; events happening in society will usually reflect in the authors work. Literature can shape society by spreading new concepts or making criticisms of modern society (parallels between anti-communist mentality and the witch hunts). Three ways of reacting to fear are (i) by showing cowardice or lack of principle, (ii) by lying or misrepresenting the truth, (iii) by intimidating those weaker. Groupthink and mob mentality can create paranoia and hysteria in society. People have a ―circle of obligation‖ that can often determine when an individual takes a stand in opposition to an individual or larger group. The ―common good‖ describes a specific ―good‖ that is shared and benefits all (or most) of a community. The common good is not the ―best‖ for every individual in a society – people may have to accept certain things because they are beneficial for the majority.

     

Students will know:  Key terms: Puritanism, Conjure, Moral Hypocrisy, Magistrate, Dissembling, Abomination, McCarthyism, Communist, Mob mentality/groupthink, Circle of Obligation, Blacklist, Scapegoat, Fear, ―common good,‖ power, authority. The justice system during the witch hunts in Europe was not the same as it is today. Students will explore trial by oath, trial by fire, trial by ordeal (hot and cold water) as well as various other torture methods that were used during this time and compare it to the justice system we have today (innocent until proven guilty, checks and balances that are created in our government). The Crucible reflected the values of the McCarthy era and the Red Scare similar to how Malleus Maleficarum (Hammer of Witches) reflected and shaped the views for witchcraft in Europe. The Crucible demonstrates many instances of fear which are still prevalent today: fear of the court, fear of the evil and the unknown, fear of individuals, fear of being wrong, fear of exposing one’s own sins or faults, fear of hurting others, fear of punishment. Fear can lead individuals acting irrationally (suspicion). Ex. A current example is the government spying on their own citizens for fear of terrorism. Human behaviour --groupthink and conformity can be examined throughout history: The Wave, The Asch Experiment, or the Vancouver Hockey Riots. Human behaviour-- power and authority often leads to obedience: The Stanford Milgram Experiment and the Holocaust are known examples of this. Reverend Parris and Danforth do not have the ―common good‖ in mind during the Salem Witch Trials. Reverend Parris is worried about his reputation with the community and keeping his position. Danforth is worried about people ―undermining his court‖ and authority—without these witch trials, he would be out of a job.

   

Students will be able to:     Analyze primary sources in order to identify main ideas and purpose. Analyze the philosophical, ethical, and social influences that have shaped information, issues, characters, plots, and themes. Create a range of visual, multimedia, oral, and written texts to explore: identity, social responsibility, and social action. Be able to question, predict, connect, summarize, and reflect on each Act of the play.

Performance Tasks:   Photo Research Essay Assignment **Attached on back** Responses (depending on class behaviour, students may have opportunities to discuss these in groups beforehand in order to brainstorm ideas). This responses will be supplemented by lessons on human behaviour.




Although Miller set The Crucible centuries in the past, he is still discussing social problems today. His play explores the human elements that led to societal upheaval and to the eventual downfall or salvation of people who participate in it. The Problems of Salem were thought by the majority of people to be directly attributable to an external force (the Devil) but Miller implies that, in truth, they were brought about by internal human characteristics present in any era. Following are three negative human characteristics. For each, name at least two characters who demonstrate each and briefly describe how he or she shows it. a) Personal jealousy or envy of possessions b) Guilt or fear of discovery about personal private sins. c) Hysteria or loss of emotional control. d) Of the above, which do you consider to be the main cause of the problems in Salem? Explain. By the end of Act Three, hysteria (unmanageable fear) is widespread in Salem. Such an epidemic of emotional excess occurs when the fears of individuals affect others. In Act Four, Miller goes on to show how hysteria can destroy most all positive relationships. Following is a list of fears experienced by residents of Salem. For each, name at least one person who felt that fear and explain how his or her own actions were affected by that feeling: a) Fear of the court b) Fear of individuals c) Fear of being wrong d) Fear of exposing one’s own sins or faults e) Fear of hurting others f) Fear of punishment Below are three undesirable ways in which an individual may react to fear. Give the name of at least one character who illustrates each reaction and briefly explain how that reaction harmed others and contributed to the growing hysteria: a) By showing cowardice or lack of principle b) By lying or misrepresenting the truth c) By intimidating those weaker Can you see any of the fears listed above that are widespread today? Do any have the same potential to cause hysteria similar to that in Salem? Explain.

Other Evidence:  Previewing: The Salem Witch Trials, Witchcraft in the 16th and 17th centuries, Puritan religion and beliefs, Joseph McCarthy, Communism and the House Un-American Activities Committee, The Red Scare and Blacklists. – D Webquest— Students learn about the justice system that existed during the Middle Ages in Europe and it’s relation to witchcraft. – F Comprehensive Questions and vocabulary—F

 

  

Characterization Chart: Students need to fill out chart that describes different character’s main motivation, main conflict, personality, and effect on plot in The Crucible. This will help them understand the plot as well as relationships between characters. – F Character Relationship Visual Representation—Graphic organizer that helps students learn the relationships between different characters. F Irony – Students analyze the irony that happens in Act Three of The Crucible and need to determine whether it is verbal, situational, or dramatic irony. The ―Circle of Obligation‖ chart.

Photo Research Essay Assignment Your photo essay must include the following:


1-2 page summary 5-8 appropriate pictures 1-3 minutes of audio (your narrative)

The Crucible by Arthur Miller provides a unique look at human behaviour. Mass hysteria (when a group of people feel the same emotion like happiness, fear, sadness or extreme excitement) occurs when a group of girls make the town so fearful of witchcraft that townspeople will go to any length to cleanse the whole community. While this behaviour may seem bizarre, the following topics each provide an event or experiment that can help provide similar insights for human behaviour. Your job is to research one of these topics and provide a look at what the event/experiment shows us about human behaviour. Your summary should include the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Who? (Conducted the experiment/was involved in the event) What? (What happened during the experiment/event?) Where? (Where did the experiment/event take place?) When? (When was the experiment done/did the event take place?) Why? (What does the experiment/event show us about human behaviour?) Can we relate this human behaviour to Arthur Miller’s The Crucible? (Provide examples from the play). **Be sure to focus on this question on your essay as it is the most important (or, in student language, it is worth the most amount of marks)**

Possible topics: The Milgram Experiment Links:

The Stanford Prison Experiment Links: **warning nudity**

The Asch Experiment or “mob mentality”: Conforming to the majority. Links: Vancouver Hockey Riots (pg 43, 46, 48, 51-53)

McCarthyism and the Red Scare (1947-1954)
Links: (provides good overview of what happened) G%3D%26hl%3Den%26as_sdt%3D0%252C5%26as_vis%3D1#search=%22mccarthyism%22 (The above article compares the Red Scare to the war in terrorism that is happening today).

The Salem Witch Trials Links: (primary sources-- court records, maps, etc.)

How to Make a Photo Essay:
If you do not have a YouTube account or want to use a separate account for this assignment, you will need to create a new one. Step 1. Go to . Step 2. Click on ―Project‖ Step 3. Click on ―New Project‖ Step 4. Name your photo essay (next to the ―Project‖ down bar) with the following format: Photo Essay – ELA B30 – (Your Topic Title) Step 4. Click on ―a‖ icon and add title to your photo essay. You should have two separate titles. One should be the name of your event/experiment that you have researched. The next title should include the following: your name, class, teacher’s name, date. Step 5. Click on the camera icon and go to ―Add photos to project.‖ Step 6. Click on ―Upload photos‖ and upload your chosen photographs. Step 7. If you want to add a photo to your essay, click and drag it onto ―Drag videos here‖ bar that is on the bottom of the webpage. Step 8. Click on the music note icon and upload your narrative (audio file). Step 9. Drag your audio file to the designated box (at the bottom of the video). Step 10. Play your video, adjusting the photo length time when necessary. Step 11. Add some transitions for dramatic effect.

** To record audio, go to **
FUN FACT: You can record audio by putting your headphones into the microphone jack and speaking into your headphones. WHHHAAT? I know, crazy.

Questions? Email me @