Forest Activity: The Forest as Inspiration for Literature

Forest Activity: The Forest as Inspiration for Literature

3 Pages · 2000 · 11 KB · English

Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe also has sections on Robin Hood and the forest. High School: • Conrad, Joseph. Heart of Darkness. The morality of the

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Forest Activity: The Forest as Inspiration for Literature Objective: After reading several stories, novels, or plays at their grade level, students will analyze what role the forest played as a setting, a character, or a symbol in the work and in the culture of the time in which it was written. (In lower grades all students can read one story or book together; in upper grades, students could choose a work to read analyze and present to the class, or complete on of the suggested activities below). Time Required: varies with age level from one 15-20 minute period to a 50-minute period within the reading of a chapter book or novel containing reference to a forest to a unit on themes in literature with reports on separate books or stories. This lesson is meant to be an addition to those done when reading a selection from your curriculum, which may be one of the titles below, or one related in theme or con- tent. Discussion points: Older students could discuss ·Why the fairy tales, with the forest so often portrayed as a symbol of chaos and danger, are so potent in our memories. ·What language is used to describe the wilderness? What does that say about the beliefs of the describers or listeners of the time? ·Of what things or ideas has the wilderness been a symbol? ·Can you trace this line of stories back through European history (legends, myths, fables)? ·What lingering attitudes or feelings do we have about the ‘wilderness”? ·What other tales, myths, legends, and stories do you know in which the forest is a symbol of something evil or dangerous? ·What stories do you know in which the forest is something benign or positive? ·What stories from non-european cultures feature the forest as a setting or character? What is the feeling toward the forest in the stories and in the cultures? Suggested Works: Early Elementary: ·Berenstain, Stan. Berenstain’s Bears and the Ghost of

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