Lesson #5: Exploring Theme

Subject: English— Drama: Twelve Angry Men
Title: Lesson 5—Exploring Themes
Grade: ENG 3C1
Time Frame: 150-300 minutes

Curricular Expectations:

  • Oral Communication:
    • Listening to Understand: (1.2) select and use appropriate active listening strategies when participating in a variety of classroom interactions
  • Reading and Literature Studies:
    • Reading For Meaning: (1.4) make and explain inferences about texts, supporting their explanations with well-chosen stated and implied ideas from the text; (1.6) analyse texts in terms of the information, ideas, issues, and themes they explore, examining how various aspects of the texts contribute to the presentation or development of these ideas; (1.8) identify and analyse the perspectives and/or biases within the text, and comment on any questions they may raise about beliefs, values, identity and power;

  • Writing:
    • Developing and Organizing Content: (1.2) generate, expand, explore, and focus ideas for potential writing tasks, using a variety of strategies in print, electronic, and other resources; (1.3) locate and select information to appropriately support ideas for writing
  • Media:
    • Creating Media Texts: (3.4) produce media texts for a variety of purposes and audiences, using appropriate forms, conventions, and techniques

Lesson Expectations:
  • Students will explore various themes within the play in small groups, sourcing out textual evidence to support;
  • Students will extend their understanding of the themes by digitally displaying the meaning (including text, images, video) in a web 2.0 application;
  • Students will upload digital displays to a collective digital reel and engage in meaningful discourse about similarities

Ancitipatory Set: (10 minutes)

Making Inferences on Post-its
-The teacher hands each student ONE post-it note and uploads the following image (thematic wordle) on the front SMARTboard.
-The teacher asks students to make some inferences on their post-it note as to the meaning of the wordle, which is all about “Theme.” Students will post on the front board when complete and the teacher leads a discussion/review on theme.

Procedure/Instructional Sequence: (50 minutes)
Introduce Thematic Learning Centres
-The teacher introduces the lesson activity, which involves students working in small groups and visiting four learning centres within the room;
-Students will explore the following four learning centres (themes):
  1. Justice and Fairness
  2. Class and Race Prejudice
  3. Democracy and Civil Responsibility
  4. Influence, Power, and Convictions: Legal and Moral

-Students must have access to computers/laptops and the Internet, and will:
1. Begin with the discussion prompts on the handout, and engage in discourse with peers in groups to find textual evidence;
2. Brainstorm everything that is expose about this theme within the play, including phrases, words, quotations, images, and
3. Take these ideas and create ONE of the following digital applications:
a. Create a WORDLE (word cloud) that explores the theme—text only;
b. Create a GLOG (interactive poster) that explores the theme—text, images, videos.
4. Upload the image (wordle or glog) onto the class digital reel using VuVOX. The theme should be obvious with the use of text, images, hyperlinks, videos, quotations, etc.

Refresher on Web 2.0 Applications:

-The teacher the following applications on the SMARTboard and reviews the features.
  1. Wordle: creates “word clouds”

  • This program allows for exploring themes or ideas with great fluency; students type out their words or phrases into a word processing document, copy and paste into the webpage (www.wordle.net )
  • TIPS:
(1) if students wish to join phrases, they must use ~ (a squiggle hyphen) with no spaces in between the words (i.e.
(2) the more students type out the words/phrases, the larger they appear on the screen;
(3) hit the “randomize” button to view a variety of options for their wordle, then play around with the features (font, colour, layout)
at the top;
(4) in order to save, students must use the “print screen” button on the keyboard, go into PAINT, then paste and save as a JPEG

2. Glogster:
  • This collaborative online learning program, “Poster Yourself” allows teachers and students to post various interactive posters/walls (glogs) that can be used for visual presentations and also lend themselves to both viewing and responding between members http://edu.glogster.com/ OR www.glogster.com/ , which is a free version of Glogster;
  • Visit the opening page of the website and play the introductory presentation “Poster Yourself” to view the features of glogster.

3. VuVox:


  • This is a linear slideshow creator (digital reel) that is used to develop personal or collaborative slideshows using your own digital media, such as video, photos, music and text; http://www.vuvox.com/
  • Visit the opening page of the website and scroll through the introductory presentation “The past…the present.”

Share Fair
-Each group will post their Wordle or Glogster page on the class digital reel (VuVox);
-As a class, the teacher facilitates a share fair, drawing similarities between the various Wordles and Glogster pages that explore each theme within the play;
-The teacher saves the reel on the webpage, or on the network, for students to access for future reference.