Monday, August 24, 2015

Make a Home for the Unit Plan-'Neverhome'




Neverhome by Laird Hunt
Image from Amazon  http://amzn.to/1NF0O71

From the first page of Neverhome by Laird Hunt, I was mesmerized. Was my absorption due to
~the first line, “I was strong and he was not, so it was me went to war to defend the republic”? 
~ the knowledge that women masqueraded as men to fight in the Civil War?
~ Laird Hunt’s ability to spin mere words into vivid and emotional word pictures, such as, “…but there had been a bite of sorrows in that empty place made me glad to think we had found another spot and weren’t going to return,” (21)? As an avid reader, I give three solid, “Yes” votes to these questions.

As a teacher, I appreciate the societal/cultural links, as well as the reasons why this 243-page novel provides a rich cross-curriculum unit of study that secondary school English and Social Studies teachers may share.

Societal/ Cultural Links
~ Constance Thompson, AKA Ash Thompson, is a woman who succeeds in a man’s world, though she has to disguise herself as a man to do so.  The two recent graduates of Ranger School, First Lieutenant Shaye Haver, and Captain Kristen Griest also excelled in a – previously -men’s only domain.
~ Some reasons for the Civil War, from both Northern and Southern Points of View are presented.
~ The interpretation of historical persons, places and things as well as their symbolic meanings is timely.

Cross Curriculum Ideas
~English teachers can share elements of literature activities such as Character, Plot/Conflict and Theme with social studies teachers.
~ Social Studies teachers may share activities that deepen students understanding of the people and places of the Civil War, especially those that are shown- with literary license- in this novel.
~ English and Social Studies teachers could “guest teach” in each other’s classes.

What does this 103-page Unit Plan: Neverhome  offer teachers?
Here is a shortened version of the Table of Contents:
Objectives and Teacher Notes
A Unit Activity Plan (specifies the Common Core Anchor Standards and 
Bloom’s Taxonomy verbs for each activity)
Pre-Reading – What Do I Know?  How Do I Know It?                                                      
Research, Debates, Historical Footnotes















Research Project
Debate Project
Historical Footnotes
Vocabulary Activity
Section Analysis Activity (3-pages; one set is designated for every reading division section
that I created- three each for the author’s book divisions that he names, One, Two and Three.)
Group Activity –Ash’s Journey 1862-1864    
Character Activities (6)
Plot/Conflict Activities (5)
Setting Activity - Setting Up Ash(1)

Pre-Reading, Reading Study Guide,Vocabulary, Map Activity
Character, Plot/Conflict, Setting

Symbols, Theme, Tone, Figurative Language













Symbols Activities (2)
Theme Activities (2)
Tone Activity (1)                                                                                            
Figurative Language Activity

Speaking and Listening, Writing, Quiz and test, Answer Keys                 


Points to Ponder/Discussion Topics (10)
Essay Topics (8)
Project Topics (9)
Assessments/Division Quiz
Assessments Unit Test
Answer Keys: Historical Footnotes, Vocabulary, Neverhome Unit Test


This product, Unit Plan - Neverhome,  provides a plethora of teacher notes, activities and assessments that enable students to ~deepen their reading comprehension and their understanding of the Civil War and its impact on contemporary society.
~grasp the fact that what happens in the past always impacts the future
~ strengthen their writing depth and their higher level thinking skills, and, to
~ create lifelong readers and learners.


Enjoy a Teach it Now Day, Every Day





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