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Ch 6: Realism in Literature Lesson Plans

About This Chapter

The Realism in Literature chapter of this course is designed to help you plan and teach the works and stylistic elements of this literary movement in your classroom. The video lessons, quizzes and transcripts can easily be adapted to provide your lesson plans with engaging and dynamic educational content. Make planning your course easier by using our syllabus as a guide.

Weekly Syllabus

Below is a sample breakdown of the Realism in Literature chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.

Day Topics Key Terms and Concepts Covered
Monday The movement, responses, and the Civil War Review characteristics and elements of the literary period, compare Romantic literature style elements with that of Realism, and analyze how the following Civil War era writers and pieces of literature reflected aspects of Realism: Frederick Douglass and Uncle Tom's Cabin
Tuesday Mark Twain Go over Mark Twain's biography, discuss his style, describe why he was identified as a regionalist writer, and examine the style and Realist elements of the following works by Twain: 'The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County,' 'Million Pound Bank Note,' and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Wednesday Naturalism Decipher the close relationship between Naturalism and Realism, identify the characteristics of Naturalism, point out Naturalist authors, and review Stephen Crane's works
Thursday Kate Chopin Discuss Chopin's history, describe why she is identified as both a Realist and regionalist writer, and go over her character portrayals and use of escapism themes in the following works: The Awakening and 'Story of an Hour'
Friday Realism and the portrayal of migration and society Briefly review the biographies of the following writers: Edith Wharton, Willa Cather, Henry James, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman; discuss some of the major works of these writers in relationship to the Realist movement; and, analyze how these writers treated the following themes and elements: the American in Europe, immigration, high society, the American Midwest, sexism, and feminism

16 Lessons in Chapter 6: Realism in Literature Lesson Plans
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Literary Realism Movement: A Response to Romanticism

1. The Literary Realism Movement: A Response to Romanticism

In this lesson, we will learn about Realism in American literature, how this new literary movement grew out of Romanticism and what circumstances in our changing nation made that literary shift possible.

Uncle Tom's Cabin and the American Civil War

2. Uncle Tom's Cabin and the American Civil War

In this lesson, we will explore the context, characters and plot of one of the country's most influential novels, Harriet Beecher Stowe's 'Uncle Tom's Cabin.' Then, find out how it inched America closer to the Civil War.

Frederick Douglass: Narrative and Style

3. Frederick Douglass: Narrative and Style

In this lesson, we will learn about Frederick Douglass, an escaped slave who became one of the most powerful voices in the abolitionist movement in the United States. In addition, we will examine his written work, most notably his first autobiography - ''Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave.''

Mark Twain: Biography, Works, and Style as a Regionalist Writer

4. Mark Twain: Biography, Works, and Style as a Regionalist Writer

In this lesson, we will learn about Mark Twain's life, his most acclaimed writings and his place as a realist and regionalist writer in this country's literary history.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Themes and Analysis

5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Themes and Analysis

In this lesson, we will continue our exploration of Mark Twain's most acclaimed work, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, through an analysis of plot, characters, and theme.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Plot Summary and Characters

6. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Plot Summary and Characters

In this lesson, we will learn about Mark Twain's most acclaimed work, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, through a close examination of characters and plot.

Twain's Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County

7. Twain's Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County

In this lesson, we will explore the characters and discuss the plotline of one of Twain's most popular short stories, 'The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County.'

Mark Twain's The Million Pound Bank Note: Summary and Analysis

8. Mark Twain's The Million Pound Bank Note: Summary and Analysis

In this lesson we will examine the plot and characters of one of Twain's most imitated stories, 'The Million Pound Bank Note.' Find out how this story challenged socioeconomic beliefs and remains an interesting story even today.

Willa Cather's My Antonia: Summary and Analysis

9. Willa Cather's My Antonia: Summary and Analysis

In this lesson, we will examine Willa Cather's most recognizable literary work, 'My Antonia'. We will take a look at the plot of this story while considering the ways in which this modernist novel uses language and setting to reflect character relationships and emotion.

Kate Chopin: Biography, Works, and Style

10. Kate Chopin: Biography, Works, and Style

In this lesson, we will learn about Kate Chopin, a Southern regionalist writer. First, we will consider how her life created a framework for stories that reflect early feminist values in a very traditional world, then we will look at her two most famous works, 'The Story of an Hour' and 'The Awakening.'

Kate Chopin's The Awakening: Summary and Analysis

11. Kate Chopin's The Awakening: Summary and Analysis

In this lesson, we will examine the acclaimed feminist novel 'The Awakening' by regionalist writer Kate Chopin. We will take a look at the protagonist, who wishes for freedom from her role as traditional wife and mother, while considering the 19th century world in which the novel was written.

Kate Chopin's 'Story of an Hour': Summary and Analysis

12. Kate Chopin's 'Story of an Hour': Summary and Analysis

In this lesson, we will examine the plot and characters of Kate Chopin's most widely read short story, 'The Story of an Hour.' We will consider the ways in which the author's topics of marriage and independence reflect her feminist sensibilities and make this an early work of feminist literature.

Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper: Summary & Analysis

13. Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper: Summary & Analysis

In this lesson, we will examine the famous short story The Yellow Wallpaper. We will consider the ways in which Charlotte Perkins Gilman uses the story to communicate about her own difficult experiences post-birth. Additionally, we will discuss her use of fiction as a vehicle to reveal what she felt was the less-than-equal existence of women during the 19th century.

Edith Wharton: Biography and Major Novels

14. Edith Wharton: Biography and Major Novels

Who was Edith Wharton? Only the author of over 40 books and the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. In this lesson, we'll explore her life and major novels.

The American in Europe: Henry James' Daisy Miller

15. The American in Europe: Henry James' Daisy Miller

In this lesson, we will examine the literary theme of the American abroad in the work of expatriate writer Henry James. Specifically, we will examine James's depiction of character relationships, behavior and social context within his novella Daisy Miller.

Naturalism in Literature: Authors and Characteristics

16. Naturalism in Literature: Authors and Characteristics

Nature is indifferent; humans are just animals. So it goes in naturalism. In this lesson, we'll explore this literary movement. Authors discussed include Stephen Crane, Jack London and Theodore Dreiser.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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