In this second unit, students will apply their new learning about human rights through a case study of how a fictional character responds to human rights challenges. This unit emphasizes the Reading Literature strand of the CCSS, with a study of the novel Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan (740L). Students also read informational texts related to the story’s historical context. They will trace the journey of Esperanza, a young girl born into a comfortable life of privilege in Mexico in the 1930s who is forced to flee to California and must rise above her difficult circumstances. This unit is designed to deliberately build students’ ability to write routinely to learn. Almost daily, they will write short informational pieces in their reading journals, in which they record their interpretations of concrete details and quotations from the book. They will analyze characters’ responses to challenges and will analyze how Esperanza changes over time. For the mid-unit assessment, students will independently read and analyze a new chapter in the novel, focusing on the challenges Esperanza faces, how she responds, and what that tells readers about her as a character. In the second half of the unit, students compare and contrast Esperanza to other characters in the novel, focusing specifically on how various characters respond to the challenges in their work camp and whether or not the migrant workers should strike. Students will create a two-voice poem contrasting the ways two different characters respond to a similar challenge. They will then write a formal essay in which they analyze how Esperanza changes throughout the novel.
What are human rights? What lessons can we learn about human rights through literature and life?
I Can Statements
Reading Informational Text • I can determine the main idea(s) of an informational text based on key details. (RI.5.2) • I can summarize an informational text. (RI.5.2)
Reading Literature • I can use quotes to explain the meaning of literary texts. (RL.5.1) • I can use quotes to support my inferences in literary texts. (RL.5.1) • I can determine a theme based on details in the text. (RL.5.2) • I can summarize a literary text. (RL.5.2) • I can compare and contrast literary elements using details from the text. (RL.5.3) • I can determine the meaning of literal and figurative language (metaphors and similes) in text. (RL.5.4) • I can describe how a narrator’s point of view influences the description of events. (RL.5.6) Reading Foundational Skills
Writing • I can write an informative/explanatory text. (W.5.2) • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (W.5.4) • With support from peers and adults, I can use a writing process to produce clear and coherent writing. (W.5.5) • I can choose evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection and research. (W.5.9)
Language • I can use what the text says to help me understand the meaning of a word or phrase. (L.5.4)
Speaking and Listening • I can effectively engage in a discussion with my peers. (SL.1) • I can adapt my speech for a variety of contexts and tasks, using formal English when appropriate. (SL.5.6)