Stage 1: Identify Desired Results:
Common Core Standards:
RL 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 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)
RI 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.
RI 7. Integrate and evaluate multiple sources of information presented in different media or formats as well as in words in order to address a question or solve a problem
W 7. Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
W 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, and audiences.
SL 1. Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 11-12 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
What essential questions will be considered?
What understandings are desired?
  • What is literacy?
  • What is the relationship between literacy and power?
  • Is it possible to have democracy if all constituents do not have access to education?
  • What is power?
  • How do some gain power over others? What enables them to succeed?
  • What is the relationship between propaganda and power?
  • Why does propaganda work?
  • Is Animal Farm a relevant novel for the 21st century reader?
  • Are utopias possible?
Students will understand that…

  • Illiteracy makes people vulnerable to propaganda and corruption
  • Education is a necessity in a democratic society
  • Propaganda is dangerous; and those who have not been taught to recognize it are more vulnerable to its power
  • Language has power
  • Orwell’s allegory specifically targets the Russian Revolution, but its themes are more universal than any specific event from any specific time period
What key knowledge and skills will students acquire as a result of this unit?
Students will know…
Students will be able to…
  • The definition of allegory
  • Key terms of the unit
  • Recognize the importance of education in a democratic society
  • Recognize and analyze the use of propaganda in Orwell’s novel and other sources
  • Use textual evidence from fictional and informational text to express their viewpoints in a discussion with their peers
  • Use strategies to read informational and fictional texts
  • Communicate their views in a responsive, respectful discussion
  • Reflect on their performance in discussion