Looking for Alaska Activities

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

'Looking for Alaska' by John Green is a coming of age novel about friendship and grief. The activities in this asset support comprehension of this book.

Looking for Alaska

John Green's Looking for Alaska is a young adult novel about a group of friends at a boarding school who navigate love, friendship, decision-making, and grief. The following activities support teachers in secondary classrooms that want students to delve deeper into the characters and other story elements in this book.

Social Media Profile

Students will create social media profiles for the characters in the novel.

Materials:

  • social media profile templates

Procedure:

  • Divide students into small groups. Provide each group with a set of materials.
  • Groups will choose 3 characters from the story. The characters chosen must be comprised of one main character, one adolescent minor character, and one adult character.
  • Students will discuss the characters and create a paper version of a social media profile that includes the following:
    • Name
    • Background
    • Religious or Political Views (if applicable)
    • Favorite Quote
    • Major Life Events
  • Groups will share and justify their decisions.

Culver Creek Preparatory School Brochure

Students will create a brochure that describes Culver Creek Preparatory School for prospective students.

Materials:

  • computer/internet/printer

Procedure:

  • Divide students into small groups.
  • Groups will discuss the Culver Creek Preparatory School setting. Discussions will include physical features and reasons why students might be motivated to attend this school.
  • Students will design and create a trifold brochure that includes the following:
    • mission statement
    • description of academic offerings and/or philosophies
    • description of extra-curricular offerings
    • information about key faculty and staff
    • at least 3 pictures
    • opinion statements of current students
  • Groups will share their brochure with the class and reflect on how the setting of this story contributes to the plot development.

Alaska's Obituary

Students will write an obituary for Alaska.

Materials:

  • computer/internet

Procedure:

  • Students will work in pairs to research examples of obituaries.
  • Pairs will create an obituary for Alaska that includes the following elements:
    • Name
    • Age
    • Date of death
    • Cause of death
    • Major accomplishments
    • Name of Alaska's deceased and surviving relatives
    • Place of residence
    • Time and place of funeral
    • What will Alaska be remembered for?
  • Pairs will share their obituaries in small groups and reflect on the importance of an obituary.

PSA

Students will create a public service announcement using elements of the story as a cautionary tale against making bad decisions.

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