Line of inquiry (essential question): How does the order of words affect the meaning of the phrase, sentence or poem?
Grade range: 6-8
Group size: Classroom
Materials: Copies of different versions of the Golden Rule, paper, pen highlighters. Variation: large 5’ x7’ index cards, large markers
Time: 1 hour
Language Arts Core: Grades 6-8[RL] 9, Grades 9-10 [SL] 6
Skills: Critical thinking skills, communication, cooperation, comparison and contrast
Directions: Each student will be given a copy of a Golden Rule variation and a highlighter. They will read the text and highlight 10 words that appeal to them. Using those words the student will construct a new text that either enhances or reiterates the original text.
Variation: In groups of 3-5, students will pass around various forms of the Golden Rule. With each pass, individual students will choose a word or short phrase and write that prominently on the index card. Then students will pass the next text to the next person and do the same with the text of the next version passed to them. Finally, the groups will come together to create a new text using the words and phrases each student has chosen. The groups can display their creations on the board as a people poem (students holding the cards, in order) or glue the cards onto a larger piece of butcher paper, to be displayed around the room.
Extensions: For the stage, the cards can be even bigger!
Reflection: How has the message changed? What are some of the ideas that are present in all the variations?
Notes: As a follow up the class can create a class poem. The class can reflect on the similarities and differences in the wording of the texts.