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UsingTextualElementstoConnectPoesTheMasque

oftheRedDeathwithHistoric/ModernDiseases
Resource ID#: 49088

Primary Type: Lesson Plan

This document was generated on CPALMS - www.cpalms.org

Upon reading, viewing, and discussing the characteristics of three diseases (including the fictional "Red Death" penned in Poe's allegorical tale, "The
Masque of the Red Death"), students will complete a "3-Circle Venn Diagram" to help synthesize (first compare and contrast) the discussed
elements. Students will use their Venn diagrams to help create a one-page summary of their comparisons of the diseases presented in the
text/clips. Student summaries should be narrowed to discuss the defining characteristics of each disease (the fictional Red Death, the bubonic
plague, and the Avian Bird Flu), as well as identify/evaluate similar patterns regarding the spread/evolution of each. Using their understanding of the
material, students should assess whether plagues will continue to plague the human race while referring to the theme of Poe's work in their
summary.

Subject(s): English Language Arts

Grade Level(s): 9, 10

Intended Audience: Educators

Suggested Technology: Computer for Presenter,


Internet Connection, LCD Projector,
Speakers/Headphones, Adobe Flash Player

Instructional Time: 2 Hour(s)


Freely Available: Yes
Keywords: Edgar Allan Poe, plague, masque, compare, contrast

Instructional Component Type(s): Lesson Plan,


Assessment , Video/Audio/Animation, Text Resource,
Formative Assessment

Resource Collection: CPALMS Lesson Plan Development Initiative

ATTACHMENTS
Pandemic Plagues.pdf
Summative Assessment Rubric Pandemics.pdf

LESSON CONTENT
Lesson Plan Template: General Lesson Plan
Learning Objectives: What should students know and be able to do as a result of this lesson?
Students will be able to use evidence from a piece (the short story, "The Masque of the Red Death") to support their analysis of the work's central point or theme.
Students will be able to make inferences regarding the characteristics of the fictional Red Death in the text, citing evidence to support their analysis.
Students will examine the treatment of the Avian Bird Flu as told in different mediums (the ABC News clip, the Daily Show mock news clip, and the nonfiction article),
noting which details are emphasized in each account.
Students will be able to make inferences regarding the texts/video clips, synthesizing details to draw conclusions based on their interpretation of the materials.
Students will write for a variety of purposes.

Prior Knowledge: What prior knowledge should students have for this lesson?

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Students should have previously read/analyzed Poe's short story "The Masque of the Red Death".
Students should have a basic understanding of plot stages (introduction, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution) as well as types of conflict:
Internal - character vs. himself
External - character vs. character, society, fate, nature
Students should be familiar with the relationship between setting, conflict, plot, and mood in certain texts, in particular that:
Time period (as an element of setting) can drive plot in unique ways
A story set in New York City in the 1700s would likely be quite different than a story set in the same city in the year 2350 A.D.
A story set in the past might also create conflict for certain characters who would not experience the same conflict in contemporary society (think women's
suffrage movement)
Such conflict helps the plot progress (plot is dependent on conflict; without a problem, we have no story)

Setting can have a direct impact on a text's mood


For example, the setting of a story in which the main character finds himself on a deserted island creates a tense, desperate mood.
These elements can help to develop/shape a text's theme. Students should be familiar with how to identify a theme in a literary work, understanding the concept of
universal themes (i.e., "Love conquers all", "Beauty is on the inside", etc.)
Students should understand what allusions are, and that authors often incorporate allusions to draw attention to symbolic representations in their works or help
readers activate background knowledge/engage in the work.
Students should understand the author's purpose (persuade, inform, entertain) and tone can affect the text's meaning and the reader's interpretation of a subject.
Students should recall that to compare involves analyzing similarities between studied pieces, whereas to contrast focuses on analyzing only differences.

Guiding Questions: What are the guiding questions for this lesson?
1. What is the prevailing theme of Poe's text? How does he shape/develop this throughout?
2. Evaluate whether Poe attempts to make a statement about the future of humanity in this allegory.
3. What classifies a disease as a "pandemic"?
4. What effect does Stewart's humorous treatment of the Avian Bird Flu have on viewers' awareness of/regard toward the issue? Does his treatment belittle the
seriousness of the issue? Does it jeopardize the health/safety of viewers?
5. Dohumansputtoomuchfaithinmoderntechnology?Arewenavetobelievemedicaladvanceshave,andwillcontinuetoprotectusfromfuturepandemics?
6. In what aspects do Poe's "Red Death" and the Avian Bird Flu compare to the bubonic plague? What is the significance of these parallels?

Teaching Phase: How will the teacher present the concept or skill to students?
Bell Work:
Instructor should prompt students to review details from Poe's allegorical short story, "The Masque of the Red Death" related to various literary elements including
plot, theme, symbolism, and mood by generating five "Fact or Lie" (True/False) assessment questions. Instructor should encourage students to create their review
"questions" (more precisely, declarative sentences/statements) based on the characteristics or effects of the deadly title disease plaguing the characters and
intensifying the conflict. Ensure students pull relevant, meaningful details (i.e., "The disease would infect and kill people within half an hour.") rather than minute
details (i.e., "'Massy hammers' were used to wall Prospero and his friends in the Abbey."). To better assess how well students are able to comprehend the text (and
determine what aspects might need further review) request students include an answer key for their questions. *An easy way to help students with organization for
this activity would be to provide six index cards (one for each question with one remaining for the answer key).
When students have finished generating their "Fact or Lie" (True/False) questions, review the questions by accomplishing one of the following:
Collect all questions, scan them quickly, then read the "best" aloud whole-group, asking for responses and discussing
Ask students to swap questions and answer their peers'; follow up with discussion of the questions
Distribute several sets of questions to small groups of students to answer together, circulating the room to assist with discussion/clarify any misconceptions.
Students should use an adequate amount of support to justify their remarks while reviewing the generated questions. This is critical when asserting a statement as a
"Lie" ("False"), so insist the correct answer is provided with relevant evidence as well. Instructor should use this formative assessment to evaluate understandings of
basic concepts related to the text's theme/central idea prior to the new readings.
Part 1a: Avian Bird Flu
I do: Instructor should ask students to be prepared to analyze Poe's subject (his fictional plague) for possible inspiration for his work. Ask students to debate whether
his disease is characterized by too many fictional elements to be considered a probable ailment.
*Discuss the work in terms of its allegorical intentions, if necessary. The analysis here is fairly comprehensive and might provide for meaningful connections. Of
particular importance is the notion the characters are powerless to the disease (and subsequent death). Refer to "Guiding Questions #1 and 2" (see guiding questions
section above) at this point to prompt discussion, directing students as necessary to clarify misconceptions.
Then, tell students they will examine several sources to gain an understanding of two actual diseases that have threatened (or are threatening) to plague humanity.
Emphasize there is perhaps a common thread among Poe's fictional disease and the other two yet to be examined. Distribute copies of a typical "KWL Chart" (or
simply have students draw their own charts on a sheet of paper), asking students to label the chart "Avian Bird Flu." Inform students their goal is to take notes while
analyzing the characteristics of this disease to refer to when filling out a "3-Circle Venn Diagram" comparing/contrasting elements of the three diseases. The Venn
diagram will then be used to help students complete their summative assessment.
Video Session 1 (Avian Bird Flu):

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I do: To help students access (or provide, if necessary) prior knowledge related to the Avian Bird Flu, adapt the procedures for a traditional "KWL Chart" by playing
one of the two clips related to the disease prior to having students fill out the first column (the "K" or "What I Know" section). I recommend bridging the previous
lesson (analyzing Poe's dark text) and the subsequent material (also serious in nature) with a bit of humor, so play the Daily Show clip before the ABC News clip
("Ready or Not: Avian Flu").
*Prior to showing the ABC News clip, complete the following procedure:
Return to the "KWL Chart" and use the gradual release method to model appropriate use of the organizer. Use think-aloud procedures to help students note features
of the disease based on the presented clip. Then, adapting the traditional "What I Want to Know" (middle or "W") section of the "KWL Chart", model for students how
to note items they "Want to know more about" or "Expect to learn more about" as the topic is explored further. As an example item, refer to "Guiding Question #3"
(see guided questions section above), suggesting you expect the clip will clarify this for you. Ask students to help assess whether your modeled expectations/desires
seem relevant based on the clip and their own understanding of the topic. Discuss, then play the ABC News clip. Discuss the content when the clip has finished, then
model completing the third and final ("L" or "What I Learned") column of the chart. Examine (through think-aloud) which, if any, desired/expected learning elements
were not addressed in the clips. Discuss "Guiding Question #4" at this time to help students make connections between the satirical clip and the news account.
(*After this step, proceed with directions under "Guided Practice: Avian Bird Flu" below.)
Part 3a: Post Articles/Videos "3-Circle Venn Diagram"
I do: Using the gradual release method, instructor will model appropriate use of "3 Circle Venn Diagram" graphic organizer to note elements unique to all three
diseases. Model expected procedures for completing the process through think-alouds, and demonstrating rereading portions of the texts/referring to "KWL Charts" to
gather evidence/clarify misconceptions. *Note: this means students will be working with both the texts and their organizers in front of them. For
example, instructor might model referring back to the text to correctly confirm the suspicion that, unlike in the allegory, the progression period of the bubonic plague
lasts more than thirty minutes. Refer to "Guiding Question #6" at this point to help students examine and evaluate the significance of the connections between these
three diseases.
When modeling filling out the Venn diagram, instructor should clarify the goal of the diagram is to help organize information from multiple sources to be used later
on (in the summative assessment). An organizer that is not organized is not of much use, so instructor should stress the importance of keeping elements parallel.
For instance, if students wish to discuss the geographical area plagued by one disease as the first item noted in one section of the Venn diagram, the element
noted first in the other two sections should discuss the same (rather than present a unique characteristic of the other diseases).

Guided Practice: What activities or exercises will the students complete with teacher guidance?
Part 1b: Article 1 (Avian Bird Flu)
We do: Distribute the "Avian Bird Flu" article. Using the gradual release method, ask students to read/identify additional characteristics of the disease and incorporate
them as appropriate in their "KWL Charts." Monitor students as they document their observations (as well as inferences that can logically be drawn from them) in the
appropriate locations.
Some suggestions for breaking this article into digestible bites include:
Pausing after each of the seven sections to summarize the content
Asking students to answer each of the questions addressed in the subheadings, supporting their responses with textual evidence
Asking students to make inferences about the disease based on the information provided
Asking students to make connections between the article and film clips, noting which details are reinforced in this article and which are presented for the first time
Asking students to examine similarities/differences between this disease and the disease in Poe's allegory.
Be sure to incorporate a healthy balance of pausing to check for understanding and allow students to reflect/discuss. Address "Guiding Question #5" (see guiding
questions section above) at this point to aid in transitioning to the next part of the lesson. Then, ask students to list additional appropriate details in the "L" column of
their charts to document the acquisition of knowledge using the steps previously modeled. Proceed with "Part 2a" below.
Part 2a: Bubonic Plague (The Black Death)
We do: Explain to students they will now examine the characteristics of a third disease (the bubonic plague) through a video and follow-up article using the same
note-taking methods employed while learning about the Avian Bird Flu.
Video Session 2 (Bubonic Plague):
We do: Distribute a second set of "KWL Charts" (or instruct students to create the chart on their own paper), asking students to label the chart "The Bubonic Plague"
(The Black Death). Inform students their goal is to take notes while analyzing the characteristics of this disease to refer to when filling out a "3-Circle Venn Diagram"
comparing/contrasting elements of the three diseases. The Venn diagram will then be used to help students complete their summative assessment. Ask them to
activate prior knowledge now (if possible) regarding this disease, filling out the "K" column. Discuss responses, clarifying any misconceptions, then proceed with the
steps addressed above for the "W" column. Ask students to share what they would like to know about the subject or expect to learn through the video clip and
nonfiction article. Finally, play the "Black Death" video clip. Follow up, if desired, with a related video on the "Black Death".
As the clip plays, circulate the room to ensure students incorporate characteristics of the disease as appropriate in their "KWL Charts." Monitor students as they
document their observations (as well as inferences that can logically be drawn from them) in the appropriate locations.
Some suggestions for breaking the content into digestible bites include:
Asking students to make inferences about the disease based on the information provided
Asking students to note when and where the bubonic plague originated
Be sure to incorporate a healthy balance of pausing to check for understanding and allow students to reflect/discuss.

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Part 2 b: Article 2 (Bubonic Plague/Black Death)


We do: Distribute "The Black Death" article. Using the gradual release method, ask students to read/identify additional characteristics of the disease and incorporate
them as appropriate in their "KWL Charts." Monitor students as they document their observations (as well as inferences that can logically be drawn from them) in the
appropriate locations.
Some suggestions for chunking this article into digestible bites include:
Pausing after each paragraph to summarize the content
Asking students to make inferences about the disease based on the information provided
Asking students to make connections between the article and film clip, noting which details are reinforced in this article and which are presented for the first time
Asking students to draw comparisons between this and the other studied diseases, supporting their responses with textual evidence
Be sure to incorporate a healthy balance of pausing to check for understanding and allow students to reflect/discuss. *Then, proceed with steps in ("Teaching
Phase" above for "3-Circle Venn Diagram)
Part 3b: Post Articles/Videos "3-Circle Venn Diagram"
We do: Using the gradual release method, instructor will monitor students' progress with completing the Venn diagram. If asking students to complete the process in
small groups, instructor could ask each group to discuss the similarities/differences between the three subjects they've established independently and select the best
examples to share with the class. Large Kagan boards and dry erase markers present interactive tools for students to collaborate and display information to help
instructor easily monitor progress.
While monitoring for student progress, instructor should ensure students are making connections that are both relevant and sufficient in detail.
For instance, instructor should guide students away from making basic comparisons such as "They are all diseases." Explain that a Venn diagram is an
organizational tool with limited space, so only the best/biggest/most important traits should be noted in it. *Proceed with "Part 3c" below.

Independent Practice: What activities or exercises will students complete to reinforce the concepts and skills developed in the
lesson?
Part 3c: Post Articles/Videos "3-Circle Venn Diagram"
You do: Using the gradual release method, instructor will direct students to continue noting observations using the Venn diagram independently. If students do not
seem to have a thorough amount of characteristics on their diagrams, suggest they add details regarding relevancy, forming connections between the diagram and the
guiding questions to help answer the "So What?" question. Refer yet again to "Guiding Question #6" to assist with this activity.
While monitoring for student progress, instructor should ensure students are making connections that are both relevant and sufficient in detail.
If students seem to be struggling with the concept of the Venn diagram, in particular keeping like elements parallel, ask students to quickly work with you to model
a separate Venn diagram comparing/contrasting more familiar/easily accessible items (for instance, favorite restaurants or music genres). Ask them to apply the
same skills to the diagram focusing on the studied works.
As students demonstrate an appropriate level of understanding (the Venn diagram is complete with relevant details; students can explain their interpretations
verbally), they should proceed with the summative assessment.

Closure: How will the teacher assist students in organizing the knowledge gained in the lesson?
Students can respond to an Exit Slip asking them to recall Poe's play on the word "masque" in his allegory. While a masque (performance consisting of acting,
dancing, costumes/props, and music) was central to the events occurring within the Abbey, the term brings with it the oft-associated connotation of a masked ball.
Analyze the text for its use of the term. Is the masque symbolic of some hidden, lurking danger? Does Poe hint at this danger through foreshadowing? Connecting this
to modern times, is there a specific aspect of society or humanity Poe criticizes in this work?

Summative Assessment
Students will use their Venn diagrams to help create a one-page summary of their comparisons of the diseases presented in the text/clips. Student summaries should
be narrowed to discuss the defining characteristics of each disease (the fictional Red Death, the bubonic plague, and the Avian Bird Flu), as well as identify/evaluate
similar patterns regarding the spread/evolution of each. Using their understanding of the material, students should assess whether plagues will continue to plague the
human race while referring to the theme of Poe's work in their summary.
Teachers can use this rubric to evaluate student summaries.

Formative Assessment
Note: Students should have read "The Masque of the Red Death" prior to the start of this lesson.
Students will review details from Poe's allegorical short story, "The Masque of the Red Death" related to various literary elements including plot, theme, symbolism,
and mood by generating five "Fact or Lie" (True/False) assessment questions. (The idea for this activity is loosely based off a board game, although the board game is
not needed to implement this activity with students.)
Instructor should encourage students to create their review questions based on the characteristics or effects of the deadly title disease plaguing the characters in the
text. Ensure students pull relevant, meaningful details (i.e., "The disease would infect and kill people within half an hour."), rather than minute details (i.e., "'Massy
hammers' were used to wall Prospero and his friends in the Abbey."). To better assess how well students are able to comprehend the text (and determine what
aspects might need further review) request students include an answer key for their questions.
Prior to viewing two video clips and reading an article on the characteristics of the Avian Bird Fl, students will complete the first two columns of a typical "KWL Chart."
Use this chart to assess students' prior knowledge regarding the topic and their readiness to transition to the next activity. While viewing the videos and reading the
article on the Avian Bird Flu, students will add to their "KWL Chart" regarding characteristics of the disease and the manner in which it has evolved/spread to pandemic
proportions.
Students will create a second "KWL Chart" prior to viewing a video clip on the characteristics/effects of the bubonic plague in Europe. While viewing the video and
reading the article on the bubonic plague, students will add to their "KWL Chart" regarding characteristics of the disease and the manner in which it evolved/spread to

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pandemic proportions.
*Students will use all three formative assessments above to help them organize their notes to complete the following:
Upon reading, viewing, and discussing the characteristics (ask students to narrow their focus to the defining symptoms/characteristics of the three diseases and the
manner in which they spread), students will complete a "3 Circle Venn Diagram" to help synthesize (first compare and contrast) the discussed elements.
*See "Further Recommendations" below for ideas regarding the incorporation of the Venn diagram:
Students will use the Venn diagram to help them organize their notes while summarizing their comparisons of the diseases. Instructor should use the Venn diagram to
help students review the texts/media clips, monitoring for understanding and clarifying misconceptions if students' responses demonstrate confusion.
Prior to releasing students to complete the summative assessment (for which a complete and thorough Venn diagram is essential), instructor could ask students to
share responses with a partner or within a small group, engaging in discussions and helping one another deepen their understanding of the text/clips. Students could
then share some of their findings/reflections in a whole-group discussion.

Feedback to Students
Throughout the lesson, instructor will provide feedback/engage in discussion to ensure:
Appropriate comprehension of all texts/media clips
Instructor should probe to verify students possess strong understanding of literary elements unique to Poe's allegory.
Instructor should also probe to verify students possess strong understanding of the presented/implied characteristics of the defining symptoms/characteristics
of the three diseases and the manner in which they spread in each piece. Ensure students can also explain the relevance of commonalities. Ask students to
synthesize the acquired information to assess whether plagues will continue to plague the human race.
Correct use of Venn diagram to organize notes in a useful manner
Is the diagram being used as an activity or as a tool to help students grapple to find meaningful connections between multiple fiction and non-fiction pieces
(including an allegorical tale, a medical article, a documentary, a news clip, and an entertainment "fake news" clip)? Are students able to see beyond the
obvious comparisons/contrasts (i.e., "The diseases kill people.")? Prompt students with questions such as "What is the significance behind the similarities to
Poe's Red Death and the bubonic plague?" and "Is it significant that there are parallels between these diseases and modern pandemics?"
Students are engaged, on task, and possess an awareness of each task's instructions/relevance
Instructor should periodically check in with students while circulating the room, asking them to clarify for instructor (or peers) the directions of the task they are
working on and the reason for doing so. Provide clarification individually or to the whole group as necessary.

ACCOMMODATIONS & RECOMMENDATIONS


Accommodations:
While progressing through the texts/video clips, be sure to incorporate a healthy balance of reading/viewing and pausing to check for understanding. This will allow
students to reflect, digest, and discuss the material. If it appears students miss critical pieces of information as they are presented, pause, and probe students to see if
they merely overlooked the details or failed to see the relevancy and engage further discussion as appropriate.
Chunk information into digestible bites for students, providing the background necessary (if it appears some students do not possess such prior knowledge) to allow
students to access the lesson.

For instance, probe with a key idea/essential question about the limitations of scientific advancement
Help students with potentially troublesome vocabulary as necessary. Students may benefit from clarification regarding the meanings of the following terms:
Pandemic
Avian
Cessation
Whenever possible, encourage students to grapple to find word meanings rather than consult a dictionary. Remind students they may be able to rely on word parts
(prefixes, suffixes, roots) and context clues to aid in their comprehension of the text.
Ask students to try to connect the following terms with the list above:
Epidemic
Aviation/aviary
Cease/decease
If students seem to be struggling with the concept of the Venn diagram, in particular keeping like elements parallel, ask students to quickly work with you to model a
separate Venn diagram comparing/contrasting more familiar/easily accessible items (for instance, favorite restaurants or music genres). Ask them to apply the same
skills to the diagram focusing on the studied diseases.

Extensions:
Students could develop and examine theories surrounding the connections between the fictional disease Poe presents and the argument presented in this article,
claiming a potential real (and modern) inspiration for the Red Death. Students could present their findings in writing or in a brief report (perhaps using multimedia
presentation tools, i.e., Prezi/PowerPoint presentations).

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Suggested Technology: Computer for Presenter, Internet Connection, LCD Projector, Speakers/Headphones, Adobe Flash Player

Special Materials Needed:


Teachers will need access to technology necessary (computer/projector setup) to display the video clips (available to stream online).
Teachers will need to provide students with access to copies of the allegory, as well as the Bird Flu and Black Plague articles.
When modeling the use of the graphic organizers, it is generally helpful to display the think-aloud process using a document camera or SmartBoard for the students.
The same effect could be created by drawing the diagrams on a whiteboard or chart paper.
A completed model of the "3-Circle Venn Diagram" has been provided to assist teachers with the lesson.

Further Recommendations:
Prior to showing the Daily Show clip to students, view for content, and assess if students possess appropriate levels of maturity to handle the themes presented.
"3-Circle Venn Diagram": Teachers may want to use the interactive tool provided by ReadWriteThink.org to create their own 3-Circle Venn Diagram. To encourage
participation from kinesthetic learners while incorporating the use of technology, students could use Internet-enabled computers to complete their Venn diagrams on
computers.
Cross curricular connections with social studies and science teachers would certainly enhance students' understanding of the concepts addressed in the work. A prior
understanding of world history and medical science would help students examine possible connections between the three subjects examined.
If concerned that students will need additional focus for the Bell Work "Fact or Lie" (True/False) questions related to the allegory, impose the following restrictions:
Two questions must be related to the title disease
Two questions must be related to the story's plot
One question must be based on theme

Additional Information/Instructions
By Author/Submitter
Poe, Edgar Allan. "The Masque of the Red Death." 1885. Lexile: 1180L "Frequently Asked Questions About Bird Flu." WebMD. 2011. Lexile: 1040L "Eyewitness Account: The
Black Death." DiscoveryEducation. Lexile: 1060L

SOURCE AND ACCESS INFORMATION


Contributed by: Wayne Beck
Name of Author/Source: Wayne Beck
District/Organization of Contributor(s): St. Johns
Is this Resource freely Available? Yes
Access Privileges: Public
License: CPALMS License - no distribution - non commercial

Related Standards
Name
LAFS.910.RI.1.1:
LAFS.910.RI.3.7:
LAFS.910.RL.1.1:
LAFS.910.RL.1.2:
LAFS.910.W.4.10:

Description
Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences
drawn from the text.
Analyzevariousaccountsofasubjecttoldindifferentmediums(e.g.,apersonslifestoryinbothprintand
multimedia), determining which details are emphasized in each account.
Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences
drawn from the text.
Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze in detail its development over the course of the text, including
how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.
Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a
single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.

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