Tag Archive for history

Greek Mythology: The Iliad, Day 1

Goals for the Week:

  1. Understand the mythology of the Trojan War.
  2. Understand the plot and characters of Homer’s Iliad.
  3. Complete the Iliad Character Research Prompt.

Today’s Checklist:

  1. Complete a Nearpod lesson on the Trojan War
  2. Choose and listen to one episode of Trojan War: The Podcast (episode 1-10).
  3. Understand and start thinking about this week’s assignment.

Your assignment for this week!

This week you will:

Today’s Lesson!


  • 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 can analyze the mythology of the Trojan War by listening to a podcast and doing my own research so that I can understand what happens in Homer’s Iliad.


This Nearpod lesson is a very simple summary of the Trojan War. It might be a review from a World History class, but it’s some really good basic background info!

Work Session: 

Today we’re learning the backstory behind The Iliad, the story of the Trojan War that leads up to the famous poem.

Fast Facts:

  • The Trojan War lasted over ten years.
  • The Iliad picks up in year 9.
  • The hero of The Iliad is a dude named Achilles (pronounced “ah-kill-ees”)
  • To understand The Iliad, you need to know some of the events that lead up to the Trojan War.

Under normal circumstances, we would spend two whole days just talking about the stories behind the Trojan War, and then discussing all these things in depth and how they preceded the conflict in The Iliad. But these aren’t normal circumstances, so instead, you’re getting the short version!

Task: Listen to an episode of Trojan War: The Podcast by Jeff Wright. Head over to TrojanWarPodcast.com and browse through the episodes. You can read a short description of each episode, as well as a description of the commentary and the running time. Choose ONE episode from episodes 1-10 and listen to the whole thing. The entire podcast is 23 hours long, so you can listen to it if it interests you, but today I’m just asking for ONE episode.

Closing Session:

After listening to your podcast episode, message your teacher over Remind and tell them which episode you listened to and if you liked it!

Then, let’s preview this week’s assignment. You’re going to be choosing a character and researching their role in the war, then filling in a chart with what you learned.

Make sure you know what’s expected of you this week for your assignment, read over the character choices, and message your teacher if you have any questions.

PS – we will have a ZOOM MEETING on Thursday at 11am! This is optional, but we are looking forward to seeing your smiling face on the camera, so please try to come!

Looking Ahead: Tomorrow’s Checklist

  1. Understand the plot of Homer’s Iliad
  2. Understand the character of Achilles and his motivations
  3. Begin to grapple with the language of Homer

Rainy Friday


CCRR9 Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.
ELACC9-10RH5 Analyze how a text uses structure to emphasize key points or advance an explanation or analysis

Learning Target

You will be able to define Imperialism and explain how symbolism is used in imagery and poetry.


Crash Course!

Work Session

Before we get started, someone tell me, what’s going on in this old cartoon?

What is Imperialism?? Anyone have any idea?! Okay well…

Imperialism is forcing one countries rules and power through force or military action.
Ex) British Invasion….anyone remember this from social studies?!

Today we are going to read The White Man’s Burden and we are going to look at how Imperialism affected different people.

1) This T-chart will be due for a grade at the end of class. We are going to go over it together but make sure you are paying attention 🙂

2) Make sure you take out another sheet of paper and write your own answers down. First, let’s read the poem. You guys read it to yourself first, then we I will read it. You always have to read poems over a few times to actually try and understand them. Now, lets try and do the first three questions. You guys try to do them yourself; then we will go over them.
Next, lets look at the two cartoons and try and see whats going on.

If there is still more time, we will pull up other ads online. Go over more pictures and talk about the symbolism in them.

Closing Session:

Exit Ticket:
3 things about Imperialism
2 things about symbolism in a text
1 example from the poem

Assessment: Closing ticket, Student answering from the ad

Differentiation: Students get to read the poem and hear it out loud. I have also included two different activities that you can choose certain students to do. Looking at pictures also helps the visual learners.

Welcome to Caesar!

Standard: SL.9-10.1. 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.

Learning Target: Students will learn historical context for Julius Caesar, and participate in a value line to determine how they feel about different moral issues.

Activator: Video SparkNotes: Julius Caesar Summary

Welcome to Monday! We’re going to start out today with a little PowerPoint introduction to the story we’re about to read, The Tragedy of Julius Caesar:

Introduction to Julius Caesar

After that, we’re going to do a little value line activity. This is the one where we have “Agree” and “Disagree” on the walls, and you go stand where your opinion lies. Here are the statements we will be working with today:

  1. It is never OK to kill another human being.
  2. Sometimes, the good of many outweighs the good of one.
  3. People always want more power for themselves.
  4. The worst thing someone can do is to betray a friend.
  5. You should listen to your gut instinct instead of the advice of others.
  6. Arrogance will be the downfall of the greatest leaders.
  7. The best leaders are loved by the general public.
  8. A small group of powerful men should be able to decide the fate of a nation.
  9. Sometimes you have to go to extremes to make your point.
  10. Doing something wrong and admitting it is an honorable thing to do.

Welcome Back to Legends!

I’ve turned this text orange in honor of our new unit, Legends! Our focus for this unit will be Arthurian Legend, which I think is pretty cool – all Camelot and Knights of the Round Table and Guinevere and Dragons and junk. FUN!

Standard: ELA10RL3 The student deepens understanding of literary works by relating them to contemporary context or historical background, as well as to works from other time periods.

Learning Target: Students will learn about the historical background surrounding Arthurian legends, and see a brief PowerPoint about creating in multiple genres. Students will also understand the requirements of their Pick Three project.

Activator: Daily video! You can’t go wrong with this classic Disney video!

The Sword in the Stone: Arthur Becomes King

So, today in class we kicked off our Arthurian Legend unit by looking at the history of the legend and where it came from! King Arthur actually was a real guy – here’s the Wikipedia article to prove it – but the legends that sprang up around him have eclipsed the history in the centuries between his rule and now.

In a few minutes, we’re gonna get into the historical Arthur story, but before we do that, let’s look at your Big Writing Assignment for this unit. It should be a lot of fun – It’s called the King Arthur Pick Three! Project.


You will choose three of the boxes listed on the chart below. Your choices must meet the following requirements:

  1. Your choices must come from three different rows. You cannot choose two boxes from the same row.
  2. Some of the boxes (marked with a †) must be completed at home. You may choose one of these boxes.

We will have time in the computer lab to complete your research and work on your choices. Your completed project is due on Tuesday, May 1st.
Each of your choices will be worth 33% of your grade. Therefore, if you fail to turn in one of your three boxes, you will automatically fail the assignment.
Boxes marked with a ‡ are digital projects that will not have a hard copy to turn in. You will fill out a short form if you choose one of these, so that I know where to look to find it.

tl;dr – Pick three boxes from different rows. One can have a †.






Write a short story about a Knight in King Arthur’s Court, or an essay that answers the question: “Was King Arthur a real, historical person, or just a legend?”

Research medieval fashion and dress up as a character from a legend or as a Knight.

Draw a comic or make a webcomic using StripGenerator (www.stripgenerator.com) starring a Knight of the Round Table, King Arthur, Guinevere, etc.

Make a diorama of a scene from one of the legends, or a model or sculpture. †


Write a series of blog posts, tweets, an email exchange or diary entries as though you are a Knight of the Round Table. You can make a real blog online at www.blogger.com

Act out a scene for the class / do a monologue / make a video of a skit (this one may be completed with a group, but you will be graded individually.)

Research food from King Arthur’s time and cook for the class. You will need to type up and turn in your recipe!

Make a poster or collage of pictures, quotes, information, etc. about King Arthur, his Knights, Camelot, etc. †


Make a quiz on www.quibblo.com that asks questions about King Arthur/Camelot, or a “personality test” (eg., “Which Knight are You?”)

Make a Facebook wall for a character or Knight of the Round Table using the PowerPoint template found on the class blog (www.osborne10thlit.com)

Compose song using a program such as Soundation (www.soundation.com) or AudioTool (www.audiotool.com).

Make a Delicious Stack (www.delicious.com) or a Symbaloo board (www.symbaloo.com) with resources about King Arthur.


Make a fake magazine cover (www.fakemagazinecover.com) about King Arthur, one of the Knights, Guinevere, a dragon, etc. and then write an “article” in which you interview that character.

Make a VoiceThread (www.voicethread.com), Animoto (www.animoto.com) or TimeToast (www.timetoast.com) about King Arthur, his Knights, Dragons, Camelot, etc.

Make a digital film or Flash animation (www.doink.com) starring a Knight of the Round Table, King Arthur, Guinevere, etc. to show to the class.

Research Dragons, King Arthur, Guinevere, Camelot, Medieval lifestyle or fashion, etc. and make a PowerPoint or Prezi (www.prezi.com) presentation for the class.

Yay! Project directions, ftw! After we got the nuts and bolts out of the way, we learned about some history of King Arthur. But first, because you guys are SO STINKIN’ SMART, I bet you already know some about King Arthur. Let’s use a thinking map, shall we? We made a tree map of what we know, want to learn, and what we think we will learn during this unit :)

After that, looked at some cool King Arthur background info in PowerPoint. The first:

King Arthur

…and the second. This one isn’t so much about history as it is to show you examples of how King Arthur exists in many genres already, so that when you work on your multi-genre Pick Three! Project, you know you’re not out alone in the world :)

King Arthur in Different Genres

…and that’s all, folks! I’ll see ya back here tomorrow for Day 2, when we start reading our first Arthurian Legend!!

A Very Historical Tuesday

Welcome to Tuesday! One day down, four to go, right?

Standard: ELA10RL3 The student deepens understanding of literary works by relating them to contemporary context or historical background, as well as to works from other time periods.

Learning Target: Students will understand the history behind Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and begin reading the play.

Activator: Julius Caesar, the (highly) Condensed Version

Today we’re starting out with some background information on Julius Caesar. Avid readers of the blog will note that I said we were doing this on Friday, but actually we’re going to talk about the history today, because I felt really sick on Friday 🙁 So instead of lecture, we did Hunger Games, and now we get the history today! Woo!!!

Introduction to Julius Caesar

By the by, I hope you guys enjoyed the movie yesterday! That’s not the best movie version ever made – actually, we’ll watch some clips from various movie adaptations and you guys can decide on your own which is the best! I won’t tell you what I think 🙂

Anyway, after we learned a little about Roman history, we assigned our parts for reading the play – yep, that’s right, my little drama queens and kings, we get to read the whole play aloud! Here’s the cast list without names on it, and I’ll upload your individual block cast lists here:

First Block

Third Block

Fourth Block

You’ll keep these parts for the entire play, so I hope you like them!!

After all our parts are assigned, we’re going to dive right into it by reading Act I Scene i. Look forward to more tomorrow!!