The English Teacher

The Pearl


These plans for teaching The Pearl by John Steinbeck are designed for a basic 9th grade English class. The pace is slow and measured. The paper [test] and the other writing exercises are part of an overall plan to develop writing skills through the school year.
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V. Unit Twelve- Novels

   The Pearl  John Steinbeck   in Types of Literature.

   A. Chapter 1.  Read the first 3+ pages out loud as a class.
        1. Notes:  Poor people, note evidences of poverty. 
      Indian ( not specifically stated yet), ancient magic
      and more recent "Hail Mary's"
        2. Finish chapter 1 as homework.
        
   B. Quiz #1 on chapter 1                     
        1) What happens at the doctor's?  Why?
        2) What else did you learn?
                     
  Discuss concept of "songs" and racial issues and
   themes: Songs of family, people, evil.  Types of vibe 
   songs i.e. song of English class, health class, biology 
   class, your own family, Florence, Mapleton.  Racial 
   issues- Spanish and Indian reflected in many countries 
   and cultures i.e. black and white in America, Serbs 
   and Croats, etc.

      Assign p. 617-625 [8 pages per day]

   C. Quiz #2 
         1) What does Kino think that the giant pearl will do 
        for him?
         2) How is the pearl actually affecting his life?

     Notes: Compare lottery winners. How do people change, 
     and those around them? 

      Assign p. 625-633. Reading and notes  

       **Computer Group Writing  [PearlGp1.En1]  For 
           Computer writing groups:  1 editor, 1 typist, 
           4 writers..

   D. Notes: Questions for groups

        1) Would a doctor poison Coyotito? Why?
        2) Who is the first thief?
        3) How do the people change toward Kino because 
             of the pearl?
        4) How and why does Juana look at the pearl
             differently than Kino?  or Why does Juana think
             that the pearl is evil when Kino does not?

      Assign p. 633-641.
     
   E. Quiz #3 
        1) Describe the pearl buyers. ( page+)

    Assign p. 641-649.

   F. Notes:  Books by Steinbeck and their titles.
        1. Of Mice and Men from Robert Burns' "Ode to a 
            Mouse."  "The best laid plans of men gang aft 
            aglay."
        2. The Grapes of Wrath from the book of Revelation
             in the Bible.  The stored up wrath of God in the 
             Bible is compared to the stored of wrath of the 
             people in this book.  *Compare with Kino's wrath
             as a "down-trodden" indian.
       3. The Pearl.  Related to the parable of the pearl of             
     great price in the Bible.  There the pearl represents
     a beneficial religion, good for the life of the buyer          
     who sell all for the pearl.  It contrasts with Kino           
     who gives almost all for the pearl and it is not          
     beneficial to his life.  Does the pearl represent a
     materialism that causes him to forsake the sound 
     foundations of his own culture? or?

                      *******************
      v.45-46  (New Testament- Matthew 13:45-46)
           Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant
            man,  seeking  goodly pearls:  Who, when he had 
            found one pearl of great price,   went and sold all   
            that he had, and bought it.
                      ********************   

        Assign p. 649-654 [End].      

      FOCUS ON: IDEAS AND CONTENT.

     Computer group writing: [PearlGp2.En1]
     To be done at the end of the reading- just before the       
      test, 2 days!

     1) Why does Kino strike Juana?  Why doesn't she protest?
     2) When and why does Kino first know the old life is  gone?
     3) How does Kino's brother feel toward him?
     4) Identify the trackers.

   G. Unit test-   (PearlTs2.En1)

     FOCUS ON: ORGANIZATION AND CONVENTION.
                     ***********************
                                        NAME __________                                                                                 
                                        Class _________
                                        Date ____
                                        Period ______
                          The Pearl   
                  (PearlTs2.En1)  5/31/93

Write a paper in class for a test grade.  This is called 
an impromptu paper and it is similar in form to others
that you have done.  The following is a sample paper. 
You can use it for writing notes on.  Staple it to the
front of your paper when you turn it in. The paper 
should be written in ink on one side of  the paper.  
Skip lines.  Think quietly for five minutes before you 
begin writing.  You can use the notes you took in
class. Good luck.

INTRODUCTION:
  Kino and Juana were the main characters in The Pearl.  
  A lot of things happened to them during the story such as
   _________ and _____ . I think they were  _________ and 
   __________ type of people because they did ___________ 
  and  ________. 

1st Paragraph:
  Some things that happened to Kino and Juana were ________ 
  and ______. The most important happened when  ______ 
  and _____________.

2nd Paragraph:
  Kino and Juana were ___________ and  _____________ type 
  of people. This was shown when they  ________  and
   __________ during _____ _________.

3rd Paragraph:

NOTES: [*John Steinbeck calls The Pearl a parable (a story 
with message). It relates to a parable in the Bible where a 
man sells all the material things that he has for a good
religion that brings a happy life]

  Kino's "purchase" of the pearl was different than the 
  Bible pearl because he paid ___________ for it and 
  he got __________ instead.  

CONCLUSION:

  The things that happened to Kino in The Pearl 
  such as _________, __________, and ________ taught me 
  about  how people act.    I learned _________________ 
  and ______________ from reading about him and his life. 
  If I win a large amount of money I will _________  
  and ____________.