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Ch 8: How Authors Use Source Materials: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.8.9

About This Chapter

Learn how authors use source material to create themes and develop characters in modern works of fiction through our short and engaging video lessons.

Standard: Analyze how a modern work of fiction draws on themes, patterns of events, or character types from myths, traditional stories, or religious works, such as the Bible, including describing how the material is rendered new. (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.8.9)

About This Chapter

After mastering this standard, students will be able to analyze literature with regard to its influences from past literary works. The lessons in this standard cover:

  • How fiction draws on themes from other works
  • How fiction draws on character types from other works
  • How fiction draws on patterns and events from other works
  • How myths, religious works and traditional stories contribute to modern fiction

Students demonstrate mastery of this standard when providing analysis of a work of fiction either orally or in writing. They are able to describe how modern fiction can be considered new material even if it draws on past works. Mastery of this standard supports college and career readiness because being able to analyze text demonstrates strong reading comprehension skills which are often used in college and on the job.

How to Use These Lessons in Your Classroom

Below are some tips on incorporating these lessons into your curriculum in order to meet the common core standards:

Identify Common Themes

Review the lesson on how fiction draws themes from other works. Ask students to read a modern work of fiction. Upon completion of the reading, lead a class discussion to determine the theme of the story. Have students read stories from the Bible or myths that have influenced the work they just read. Break students into groups and have them discuss the similarities in themes that they noticed.

Identify Character Similarities

Have the class watch the lesson on how fiction draws character types from other works. Have the students select a short story, then separate them into groups. Have each group choose a character from the story and research other works to find similarities with characters created by other authors or by the same author in different stories.

Determine Similarities in Patterns and Events

Watch the lesson on how fiction draws on patterns and events from other works. Assign students homework to read a modern short story and traditional story. Have them write down any patterns that they notice from each of the stories. Have groups reconvene to compare notes and determine the main similarities in patterns and events.

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