I just finished teaching my second novel, Lord of the Flies! I enjoyed the book (I did not really remember much of it from high school - I think it was one of those that I “read.”). I am not sure how much the kids enjoyed the book, I really thought they were going to like it a lot more. I am not sure if it was my enthusiasm or just that they did not actually pay attention/read?
We had to read almost the entire novel in class because I did not have enough copies to hand out to all of the students. This was a frustrating aspect because of the amount of time it took to teach the novel, but a really good thing on the other hand. For instance, I now that many students comprehended more and actually did well on assignments because they were forced to read the book right in front of me. That lead to positive steps up on Bloom’s. I think we reached Knowledge, Comprehension, Application, and Analysis at least.
Another great thing about Lord of the Flies is the assignments that go along with it. For instance, because the boys are stranded on a deserted island I had the kids make a Missing Poster for them with a bunch of requirements. It really lead to some great creativity and retention from them. I got to hang them up all over the classroom, which was fun as well! For another assignment I created a list of 11 characters with different backgrounds, professions, families, etc. Then I told the kids that they could only take seven off of the sinking ship to save. This lead to some great discussions and debates ...and argument in one class! (Some of the choices were a mentally disabled student, a single mother, an old doctor and his wife, a small baby, an athlete that had anti-black views). It was fun to create and fun to see what ticked some kids off and what others really valued.