Dear AP Lang Teacher (Week 27),
We are off and running with The Crucible! This week, our greatest hits include the mob mentality game (see Week 26) and a last minute inclusion we threw in last week: the "What's the Tea in Salem" Activity. (I'll explain).
Right now, the latest slang is "Tea" whenever kids hear about gossip or drama. As you know, nowhere has more "Tea" than Puritan Salem, so we played on that and gave them the task of creating a tabloid cover with all the big drama in Salem. In their lit circle groups, they read through Miller's paragraphs about the back story throughout Act 1. Then they compiled those "headlines" on a sheet of white paper.
In all honesty, we did this in about 15 minutes, so the tabloids were very simple. However, if you wanted to expand the idea, it could be a lot of fun!
The kids loved it! Earlier in the year, the traditional juniors read the play, so they had heard tons of complaints about the play. However, last week, they all agreed that the play is WAY better than anyone told them. I think the fun hooks - the mob mentality game and the tabloid covers - really helped bring them on board. Hopefully, we can keep them for Act 2.
This week, we are digging in to Act 2 and "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God." For me, Act 2 and this sermon is about building the context of Salem. They get all the drama that is built up around them, but now, we need to talk about those elements of the culture that build them: social expectations (Act 2) and a domineering religious theocracy (Sinners). It's really our chance to further describe the extremism that created the hysteria we talked about last week.
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