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World Lit: Circle 6, Heresy


  • ELAGSE9-10RL1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text. Georgia
  • ELAGSE9-10RL2 Determine a theme or central idea of text and closely analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text. Georgia
  • ELAGSE9-10RL3 Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and
    advance the plot or develop the theme. Georgia
  • ELAGSE9-10SL1 Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions(one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 9–10 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively. Georgia
  • ELAGSE9-10SL4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence clearly, concisely, and logically such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and task. Georgia

Learning Target
I will analyze how the TV show Criminal Minds draws on Dante’s Inferno to create a modern interpretation of circle 6 of Hell.

Opening Session
Grab a sheet of paper and jot down the first five words you think of when you think of Hell…. was fire among those words? Good. Because today we meet the hottest part of Dante’s Inferno (which, now that I think of it, is kind of a silly name)… CIRCLE 6!!!!

Work Session
Welcome to the circle for the heretics, y’all. The burning dead. This particular circle of Hell is one that absolutely terrifies me! Dante discusses some contemporary celebrities with a burning sinner before Virgil moves him on, and with that, I want to go on to our main activity of the day:

CRIMINAL MINDS! How many of you guys watch this show? This particular episode – season 10, episode 2 – is all about a killer who was inspired by Dante’s Inferno. As we watch the video, pay close attention to how the killer chooses each of his victims. He already knows what “punishments” he’s going to give them (the MOs of his murders), so can you figure out how he chooses each victim?

After we finish watching today, I want to do a bit of writing. Give me 3-4 sentences on each of these prompts:

  1. Visual imagery can be a powerful thing. SEEING something is often more impressive and gives us a more lasting feeling than reading about it. Which images/scenes from this episode stand out most in your mind? Why do you think that is?
  2. What is it about the Inferno that makes this particular part – the burning, flaming part – the most memorable part of Hell?
  3. How did the producers of this episode of Criminal Mindsdraw on Dante as source material? What did they emphasize or leave out? Did they make any choices that
    surprised you?

Closing Session
Do your poster activity as your ticket out the door!!

Formative (writings, poster activity)

Process (Summaries given as needed, learning style (visual, auditory), sentence frameworks given.)

Dr. Simpsons Faustus (…2…)


  • ELAGSE9-10RL9 Analyze how an author draws on and transforms source material in a specific work (e.g., how Shakespeare treats a theme or topic from Ovid or the Bible or how a later author draws on a play by Shakespeare).

Learning Target: I will read and understand The Tragical History of Dr. Faustus and Faust, and consider the similarities and differences in the two interpretations.

Activator: Bart Sells His Soul

Work Session: So, today we’re learning about a niftyfun play called Dr. Faustus. It’s about a guy who sells his soul to the devil. No, seriously, it is! And after reading Dante’s Inferno, I bet you all can guess that that’s not really such a good idea.

We’re going to start out the day with a Dr. Faustus spoof from The Simpsons, an episode in which Bart sells his soul to Millhouse for 5 bucks. Again with the not so much a good idea, right?

After we watch The Simpsons, we’re going to read Faust from our textbook on page 851. I want you guys to partner up, choose one partner to be Faust and one to be Mephistopheles, and read the play aloud to each other. When you finish, you’ll flip to page 867, keep your same parts and readThe Tragical History of Dr. Faustus. When you’ve finished with both, I would like you to write a summary for me.

  • Write one paragraph that summarizes what happens in the two plays.
  • Write one paragraph that lists the similarities and differences in the two versions you read. You can consider such things as language, characters, plot, and so forth.
  • Hand your summary into me when you’re done, and yes, you will be graded!

Tomorrow and Wednesday is your FINAL EXAM!!!!!!

Differentiation: Learning style, modernization

Assessment: Writing will be graded