Teaching the Prologue to The Canterbury Tales

In this self-directed study involving research, composition, and presentation, students analyze Chaucer's characters of The Canterbury Tales as presented in the Prologue. Each student casts a modern personality in the role of one of the characters and writes an essay defending the choice. In this lesson students will listen to the reading of Middle English and discuss its differences from Modern English, will analyze characters from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, will conduct Internet research on an assigned character from the Prologue and write an analysis of the character. Students will cite sources correctly in written work and the presentation and will will use technology for research and presentation.

Standards & Objectives

Academic standards
CLE 3001.1.1
Demonstrate control of Standard English through grammar usage and mechanics (punctuation, capitalization, and spelling).
CLE 3005.2.2
Summarize, paraphrase, and critique information presented orally by others.
CLE 3005.2.6
Deliver effective oral presentations.
CLE 3005.8.1
Demonstrate knowledge of significant works of British literature from the Anglo-Saxon period to the present and make relevant comparisons.
 
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Learning objectives: 
  • Students will listen to the reading of Middle English and discuss its differences from Modern English. 
  • Students will analyze characters from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. 
  • Students will conduct Internet research on an assigned character from the Prologue and write an analysis of the character. 
  • Students will cite sources correctly in written work and the presentation. 
  • Students will use technology for research and presentation.

Lesson Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: 
Understanding

Helpful Hints

Materials and Technology:

  • Copies of The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
  •  project guidelines (see attached)
  • graphic organizer (sample attached)
  • Computers with Internet access and RealPlayer for audio of lines 1-42 (or other recording)
  • presentation software such as PowerPoint
  • LCD projector for project presentation

References

Contributors: