Teacher Guide

Teacher’s Guide


The Girl with 35 Names, DJ Colbert6th Grade

Lesson: Viewing Molly’s World

Chapter 2&3 “The Spectacles,” “Market Day”

Summary of the goals of the lesson:

This lesson for chapters 2/3, based around the spectacles Molly unearths, asks students to begin to think about the central image of the spectacles in the novel, as well as how those spectacles intersect with characters’ formation and Molly’s interpretation of both character as well as color theory, as she learns how to use the spectacles as a magical conduit to more deeply understand her world and community. Students will engage in close reading of words, phrases and whole passages from the text, as well as extend their knowledge out into social studies, history, science and mathematics. They will also be introduced to the concept of utilizing the historical archive as a resource for learning, which will be expanded upon throughout the lesson plans in this curriculum.

Guiding Prompts/Questions:

The spectacles are both a central literal image in the novel, as well as a way for the author to figuratively reveal to readers the growth and discovery of our heroine, or protagonist. Encourage students to think on both the micro level of the spectacles as well as on the macro level of broad knowledge about the history of vision, the science of sight, art history, and the mathematics of color mixing. And then: how can these knowledge bases support our return to the novel? Why is it important, for instance, to understand how color works when thinking about Colbert’s evocation of color and color coding in the novel?

Learning Outcomes:

Students learn literary concepts and vocabulary such as character interiority, color theory terminology (primary, secondary, complementary and tertiary color), flashback, matrilineal lineage, and the archive. Students will begin to move with ease between close literary analysis and broad-based knowledge systems that inform and enrich the reader’s experience of the novel.

CCSS Alignments:

This lesson combines a number of key components of the CCSS, and extends into the C3 Framework by drawing upon learning through social studies, optics history, mathematics, art theory and history. It is learning both through literary analysis as well as active, hands-on design and even 3D construction.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY alignments included: RL.6.1, RL.6.2, RL.6.4, RL.6.5, RL.6.6, RL.6.9, RL. 6.10.