The Truman Show Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kimberly Krafft

Kimberly has taught high school English, has a master's degree, and is currently working on earning her BCBA.

This lesson plan based on the movie 'The Truman Show' focuses on satire. Geared for your 11th- or 12th-grade students, you will work together to ultimately define, analyze, and create satirical scenes.

Learning Objectives:

Students will:

  • Demonstrate understanding of satire by writing an analysis of the use of satire in three scenes from The Truman Show
  • Apply their understanding of satire by composing a satirical scene to further the satirical message in the movie The Truman Show

Length:

90 - 120 minutes

Curriculum Standards:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.11-12.6

  • Analyze a case in which grasping a point of view requires distinguishing what is directly stated in a text from what is really meant (e.g., satire, sarcasm, irony, or understatement).

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.11-12.2

  • Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.11-12.3

  • Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.11-12.3.B

  • Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, pacing, description, reflection, and multiple plot lines, to develop experiences, events, and/or characters.

Vocabulary:

  • Satire
  • Sarcasm
  • Humor
  • Irony
  • Criticism

Materials:

  • A copy of the movie The Truman Show
    • Pre-screen the movie and identify three scenes that clearly and explicitly demonstrate satire
  • A copy of the handout Satire Note-Taking Worksheet for each student
    • This handout should include a place to document the definition of satire and then list the following questions three times so students have a place to record their answers after viewing each of the three scenes:
      • What topic or idea is the scene highlighting about our society?
      • How is the director bringing this issue to our attention?
      • What message does the director want us to take away from this scene?
  • Students will need writing instruments and paper

Lesson Instructions and Activities:

Warm Up/Do Now Activity

  • Explain the following terms in your own words: sarcasm, humor, irony, and criticism
  • Students share their answers with the class to begin thinking about satire

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