Here at Living Outside the Lines we think reading the classics is fun! It’s because we make it fun. There are so many new and exciting modern stories to choose from that the idea of reading an old book seems dismal. And, you know what, it just might be a dismal experience without a little help to spice it up. In previous posts we talked about how digging into the context in which the author wrote his tale or the setting to which he placed his characters brings an old book to life. A themed meal accomplishes the same thing. We do both of these activities at our literature club meetings but we also prepare exciting projects. In my opinion, the work behind the scenes of the project gives a workout to critical thinking skills and the enjoyment is found in the presentation.
For Le Morte d’ Arthur our project is called Extreme Make Over. Each individual or group of people chooses one of the themes of the story to highlight. Then they can either write their own scene being careful to express the chosen theme or choose a scene from the story that clearly shows the chosen theme. Either way the idea is to recreate Le Morte d’Arthur by using modern characters and a modern setting. Hopefully we can put some video footage or pictures up here after our club meets in December.
If this idea doesn’t suite your fancy, try one of these on for size and enjoy the classics!
Roundtable Discussion Topics
Trystram and Launcelot successfully demonstrate loyalty to their kings.
Vengeance is very destructive and totally pointless.
Play Hide-N-Seek, a variation of charades
1. Ahead of time write the names of characters from Le Morte d’ Arthur on a piece of paper, one name per piece.
2. Choose one person to be the player..
3. Tape one of the papers on the player’s back.
4. The player stands in front of the group and turn his back so the group members can read the paper.
5. The player chooses one person to give him a clue as to the identity of the character and he makes one guess.
6. The next person in the group gives the player a clue and he guesses again.
7. Designate the number of guesses allowed before revealing the character’s name.
8. Go around the room until everyone has had a turn to be the player or until the characters have been exhausted.
From the Treasure Chest:
For non-readers, the player can step out of the room while the facilitator reveals the character to the group.
If you have more group members than characters choose the players by lottery. Ahead of time: gather two kinds of beans or dry corn. If your group has 23 kids and you only have 6 characters, then place 6 black beans in the bowl and 17 dried corn or pinto bean or anything other than a black bean. You can use slips of paper or any kind of objects that are distinguished from each other.
Play this game at the last meeting of the year and either place titles that your group read during the year, choose characters from all the books you read or a mixture of titles and characters. Which ever one you choose it will be fun if you make the papers equal to the number of kids in your group.