From "Twelve Angry Men" to Media Literacy

A Unit Plan and Lesson Plan Outline to Promote Critical Thinking in Gr.12 Communication and Presentation Number of Lessons: 12 (6 weeks) Lesson Lengths: 80 minutes Primary Reference Text: Harrison, R.G., Gutteridge, H.D. eds. Two Plays for Study: Twelve Angry Men and Romanoff and Juliet. Toronto: McClelland And Stewart Ltd. 1967. Supplemental Material: 1957 B&W film of “Twelve Angry Men” Passionate Eye Media Literacy episode. Current newspapers/periodicals. A Unit plan in which students will be encouraged to: u2022 Present and respond to ideas, feelings and knowledge sensitively and creatively u2022 Use language confidently to understand and respond thoughtfully and critically to factual and imaginative communications in speech, print and the media u2022 Express themselves powerfully, convincingly, and gracefully for a variety of personal, social, and work-related purposes Some possibilities for student and class activities that can be included in lesson activities are: u2022 reading aloud u2022 reading on their own u2022 conducting critical analysis of the evidence under consideration u2022 considering the emotions and involvement of the characters involved u2022 consideration of any contemporary corollaries u2022 dramatizing a scene from the play u2022 determining how it could be staged in the school auditorium for a single-class period. (logistics, locations, actors, sets) u2022 rewriting a scene as a creative writing assignment in alternate formats such as udbc0udc01 prose udbc0udc01 poetry udbc0udc01 visual u2022 critiquing a pre-existing production of the play (1957 B&W Film Twelve Angry Men) how faithful it is to the screenplay, how it compares to the studentsu2019 efforts. u2022 application of critical thinking and analysis to media literacy and its effect on viewers/readers

Standards & Objectives

Academic standards
CLE 3005.2.6
Deliver effective oral presentations.
CLE 3005.2.7
Participate in work teams and group discussions.
CLE 3005.7.1
Evaluate the aural, visual, and written images and other special effects used in television, radio, film, and the Internet for their ability to inform,...
CLE 3005.7.2
Examine the agreements and conflicts between the visual (e.g., media images, painting, film, graphic arts) and the verbal.
CLE 3005.7.3
Recognize how visual and sound techniques or design (e.g., special effects, camera angles, music) carry or influence messages in various media.
GLE 0401.3.3
Know and apply the steps of the writing process: prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, evaluating, and publishing.
 
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Learning objectives: 

Learning Objectives:

Lesson 1:

At the end of the lesson, students will:

  • know the basics of a jury trial (judge, defense, prosecution, evidence, reasonable doubt etc)
  • be familiar with the context of the play (i.e know a bit of background info about the play and the author (from text pp. 46-49)
  • know which students will be in which group representing actors 1-12 (~2-3 per character)

Lesson 2:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • be familiar with the contents of Act 1 of the play (pp. 15-25)
  • be prepared for a mock-provincial exam essay

Lesson 3:

At the end of the lesson, students will:

  • Complete a timed in-class essay in preparation for the provincial exam
  • Begin choral reading of Act 2 (pp 26-35) to be completed at home for homework

Lesson 4:

At the end of the lesson, students will:

  • Be able to discuss Act 1 & 2, whys and wherefores etc. re: characters and the plot so far.
  • Do they identify with any of them? If so, why, why not, etc.

Lesson 5:

At the end of the lesson, students will

  • have completed the in-class reading of Act 3
  • have done a wrap-up on the play by doing a sociogram and a freeze-frame (tableau)

Lesson 6:

At the end of the lesson, students will:

  • identify and share with others the most crucial issue and character in the play
  • determined and defended their point of view with ‘what if’ statements and what ‘would happen as a result’
  • block out a scene that is either described directly (Jury room) or the criminal act described in court

Lesson 7:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • shared by demonstrating their blocking/story-boarding to the class on overhead
  • “not guilty or innocent” begin preparation for a unit on media-literacy by considered the role that image and presentation has on believability of the boy

Lesson 8:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • share a case with the class, articulate the facts and arguments and discuss with the class the merits of the case.
  • be able to demonstrate how presentation can be used to supersede content

Lesson 9:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • evaluate how the media’s story is a representation of a story
  • evaluate the use of language and visuals (implied or explicit) in an advert (TV, print, radio)

Lesson 10:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • re-familiarize themselves with essay format and structure (re: in-class essay of previous day)
  • use the library as a gateway for obtaining other pieces of information relating to a story or an issue
  • begin preparation of class media-literacy/advocacy project with a partner of their choice as per previous assignment. {Students prepare an issue that is important to them that they feel needs further advocacy. (i.e. more/less restrictions on driving requirements, more/less emphasis on standardized exams etc}

Lesson 11:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • continue to use the library as a gateway for obtaining other pieces of information relating to a story or an issue continue work on their assignment, due the following class

Lesson 12:

At the end of the lesson students will:

  • be able to explain and demonstrate what are the elements of a successful content delivery (book, movie, play, radio, etc)

 

Lesson Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: 
Applying
Extension suggestions: 

Assessment/Extension:

Lesson 1:

  • Completion of assigned readings. Follow-up quizlet the next day on author’s afterward, and basic format of jury trials.

Lesson 2:

  • Continuation of Discussion of Act I in (pre-existing) student journals
  • Re-read Act I in preparation for mini-in-class essay modeled on Provincial Grade 12
  • Exams with topic given ahead of time (based on in-book questions pp. 50-51).

Possible questions:

  • Make a detailed study of one of the jurors in Act 1 to discover what role he plays in the jury’s conduct and conversations
  • Consider the specific problems with the limitation of time involved in making a television production of less than fifty minutes of air time. How would you compensate for squishing a 90 minute play into 50 minutes?
  • Would you prefer to see Twelve Angry Men in black and white or in colour?
  • Justify your answer, paying attention to how the decision affects the viewer and the actors. Your experience of motion pictures may help you to make and justify your choice.
  • Explain how the mind, imagination and feelings of the viwer are projected beyond the limits of the chosen range of the camera. In your explanation, consider the setting, people and conflicts outside the jury room
  • We often allow our judgement of a play to be determined by what we call its
  • “realism” Give examples of 3 or 4 instances of ‘realistic’ or ‘unrealistic’
  • details in Act 1 and why they affect your perception of the performance

Lesson 3:

  • Re-read Act 1 & 2 in prep for following day’s conversation

Lesson 4:

  • Prepare for reading of Act 3 (pp. 36-45)

Lesson 5:

  • As per activity: journal entry assignment: reader’s digest version of the play in a poetic format of their choice

Lesson 6:

  • Journal entry continuing group work of blocking/story-boarding a scene

Lesson 7:

  • Journal entry to pre-develop thoughts for next class: think of an example where someone
  • was “not guilty” of something but might not necessarily be “innocent” either. Describe
  • the situation, what were the key factors, what your opinion is. Evaluation will be on
  • explication and evaluation of the facts and arguments

Lesson 8:

  • Journal entry to engage in critical self-exploration of how the mass-media affect their daily lives.

Lesson 9:

  • As per last activity “mock provincial”in-class essay
  • Students prepare an issue that is important to them that they feel needs further advocacy.
  • (i.e. more/less restrictions on driving requirements, more/less emphasis on standardized exams etc)

Lesson 10:

Students decide in their groups what form their advocacy should take:

  • commercial (TV, Radio, Print, or Web), grass-roots advocacy, poster, photo-essay, media production (play, paid advertisement etc), mural, song, panel discussion (who, what, where etc), bumper-sticker (not in isolation), etc.
  • Bring in one pre-cued video tape containing any of the following (for use with Lesson 12):
  • news-cast
  • favourite commercial
  • favourite music video
  • favourite tv-show
  • radio-show
  • any example of ‘product placement’

Lesson 11:

  • as per in-class check-in.
  • projects due following lesson.
  • Mini-presentation (~2 minutes) of the project for next day

Lesson 12:

  • as per in-class conversation
  • group project hand-in
  • journal entries on what the students see now when they look at TV, magazines, books,
  • listen to radio etc. Does this change their perspectives? Journal marked for clarity of explication

 

References

Contributors: 
Citations: 

Text:

Harrison, R.G., Gutteridge, H.D. eds. Two Plays for Study: Twelve Angry Men and Romanoff and

Juliet. Toronto: McClelland And Stewart Ltd. 1967.

Video:

Sidney Lumet’s 1957 B&W film of “Twelve Angry Men”(MGM Films)

Passionate Eye Media Literacy episode. (exact production number/order number unknown)