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Current in the Classroom:
Kira Kira, Part-Time Indian, and essential skills
During this unit students will choose which novel best suits their interests, either Sherman Alexie’s Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, and Cynthia Kadohata’s Kira-Kira. Students will develop fundamental skills for independent learning including how to read a text (novel, poem, article, documentary, news story, etc.) and communicate clearly about their ideas on the pieces read. They will also develop collaborative skills based upon listening to other students’ ideas, evaluating those ideas, and building new understandings and questions based on the results of the process.
The essential question students will consider throughout is: “How do communities and their expectations shape our lives?” While considering this, students will compare and contrast their own experiences to each novel’s protagonist in an attempt to understand themselves and their own communities, as well as the characters’ lives in the novel. We will also explore the themes of race and identity, prejudice, growing-up in the face of adversity, and how hope and hard work is essential to any success.