English Language Arts, Reading Literature
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
High School
  • Grade 12 ELA
  • Mythology
  • Oedipus
    Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial

    Survey Discussion On Law & Justice

    Survey Discussion On Law & Justice


    In this lesson, students will take a survey about justice and the law and discuss the results. Then they will learn about the ongoing Independent Reading assignment they’ll be doing over the course of the unit.


    • Read the lesson and student content.
    • Anticipate student difficulties and identify the differentiation options you will choose for working with your students.

    Justice: Take a Stand

    • Explain to students how Justice: Take a Stand works:
      • ✓ Each of the statements anticipates ideas and issues in their study for this unit.
      • ✓ Students should read each statement and mark a score to show whether they agree and how much.
    • Informally poll students on their responses.
    • After students share their responses with partners, facilitate a Whole Group Discussion.
      • SWD: Consider pairing struggling students with more proficient readers. Discussions with the proficient reader may spark ideas for students with disabilities.
      • ELL: Be sure that students are actively engaging with their partner, and allow them to use their native language, should they wish to, if they are paired with a student who speaks the same language.
    • On those items where students are in disagreement with each other on their scores, facilitate a discussion, encouraging students to explain their scores and support their opinions with evidence, examples, and reasons.


    Take a survey.

    • Complete Justice: Take a Stand and submit your responses.
    • Find a partner and discuss why you responded to the statements as you did.
    • Then discuss the survey with your classmates. Support your opinions with evidence, examples, and reasons.

    Strongly Agree or Disagree

    • Give students 3 minutes to write their responses.
    • Often, a Quick Write helps a student articulate ideas he or she hasn’t fully formed by just thinking.
    • Allow students another 3–5 minutes to share with a partner.
    • Explain that the class will revisit Justice: Take a Stand in Lesson 6 to see if some of their positions have been strengthened, weakened, or otherwise changed.
    • Let students know you will be discussing these issues throughout the unit, but especially during the first half where the focus will be on the law.

    Work Time

    Complete a Quick Write:

    • Choose one of the statements from Justice: Take a Stand that you strongly agreed or strongly disagreed with, and explain your position.

    Open Notebook

    Share your Quick Write with a partner.

    Later in the unit, you will revisit Justice: Take a Stand to see if any of your positions have strengthened, weakened, or otherwise changed.

    The class will discuss these issues throughout the unit, but especially during the first half, where the focus will be on the law.

    Independent Reading Group Novel

    • Call students’ attention to the texts in the Independent Readings section of More to Explore, and show them or give them a quick explanation of each book. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen is in the More to Explore library for Unit 3. It was one of the Independent Readings in Unit 2. Novels listed as Additional Suggested Readings need to be acquired by you or your students.
    • Answer students’ questions about assignments and reading groups.
    • Let students know that they must submit their first and second choice for novels by the end of Lesson 3.

    Work Time

    The Unit Accomplishments for this unit are the following:

    • Read and annotate Antigone , “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” and Pygmalion.
    • Write a literary analysis showing the effect of social class or the law on a character’s life.

    In preparation for the second accomplishment, you’ll read a novel with your Independent Reading Group.

    • Read the description of the Independent Reading Group Novel assignment. Review it with your classmates and take notes.
    • Find the Independent Reading texts in More to Explore. At the end of Lesson 3, you will indicate your top two choices and meet with your Independent Reading Group soon after. Read over the short description of each book and ask questions that can help you make a decision.

    Guiding Questions

    • Give students a few minutes to write their answers and then facilitate a Whole Group Discussion.


    Respond to two of the unit’s Guiding Questions.

    • How does social class affect a person in dealing with the law (protect a person, hurt a person)?
    • How is social class determined in America and in other places in the world?

    Open Notebook

    Discuss your responses with your classmates.


    • It would be great if you can have four students for each of the novels.
      • ELL: When sending students off to do their homework, check in with them to be sure they have the support they need to be successful in their Independent Reading. Always encourage the use of dictionaries, thesauruses, and other sources to help them with the language. If needed, consider suggesting working with family members such as older siblings (if possible) or even meeting with other students to do the homework, if available.


    Consider your Independent Reading Group Novel options.

    • Take some time to research the options for your Independent Reading Group Novel. You might want to ask a parent, teacher, or friend for a recommendation for which title to read.