LEVEL: MIDDLE SCHOOL
At the conclusion of this lesson, students will be able to:
• develop several analogies between the being created
by Dr. Frankenstein and the Constitution created by the Framers,
using historical content from history and government texts;
• develop an essay in which their analogies are conveyed;
• illustrate these analogies in a way that suggests
research, creativity, and bold experimentation.
• Handouts: It's
Much Power is Enough?; Essay
Student Illustrations, and Scoring
Online resource: Federalist
#2, and #51).
• Art supplies-- posting paper, markers, colored pencils,
• government texts; copies of Constitution.
• copy of Mary Shelly's Frankenstein (Frankenstein movie
poster or comic book, if possible).
Approximately 4-5 class periods with homework.
1. Begin by asking students what they know about the Frankenstein
story. Ask students to consider the themes presented in the
story and descriptive characteristics about the main characters.
Write their ideas on the board. Then read the excerpt from
the novel Frankenstein (Handout,
"It's Alive!")by Mary Wollstonecraft
Shelley published in 1818. Ask students to add to their list,
based upon the excerpt. In general, make sure students have
a basic understanding of the Frankenstein story before you
continue with this lesson.
2. Next, ask students to reexamine their list as they consider
the question, "What do Dr. Frankenstein and the framers
of the Constitution have in common?" (Possibilities:
experimentation, power, borrowed resources as "parts,"
something for the future, etc.)
3. Introduce the term, analogy (correspondence in some respects
between things that are otherwise dissimilar). Again using
their list, encourage students to make analogies between the
story of Frankenstein and the framers. Select several students
to share their ideas to make sure they can make several analogies
using what they know about the story of Frankenstein and the
4. As a homework assignment, students should complete questions
1-3 on the handout, How
Much Power is Enough? Tell students to begin
to think about ideas for question #4 and to begin sketching
out preliminary ideas.
5. On the next day, distribute art supplies for student pairs
to begin their illustrations. Explain to student pairs that
they should discuss their list of powers with their partners.
Allow class time for students to begin to sketch their ideas.
Allow students to view samples
of students' illustrations.
6. Assign accompanying writing assignment. Students should
now begin to "block out" their ideas. Help students
to develop topic sentences for their introductions and suggest
ways in which students can order their analogies (by importance,
by chronology, etc.). As a homework assignment, students should
develop a topic sentence to introduce their essays.
7. Ask students to read the scoring
rubric. Explain that 3 of the 5 criteria of the
rubric pertain to the writing (individual) assignment and
2 pertain to the illustration component of this assignment.
To make sure students understand the levels of performance,
make up some hypothetical examples and ask students to consider
how they might rate the essay or illustration given what you
have told them.
8. On the turn in day, review the rubric again. Help students
to "double check" for finishing touches to their
illustrations. Also ask them to share their essays with the
partners who worked on the illustration. Are the analogies
that students developed in their essays similar? Do their
essays "match" their illustrations?
9. Post illustrations throughout the classroom. Allow time
for students to view one another's work and to respond to
questions from other classmates. Determine which analogies
were cited most frequently in student essays by creating a
full class list. Why were some cited more frequently than
others? Which analogies convey important historical content?
Is the content accurate? Which analogies did students find
most difficult to convey? Finally, ask students for feedback
on the entire lesson-- was it easy, difficult, interesting,