Questions About Remote Learning?

https://www.storyboardthat.com/lesson-plans/the-lottery-by-shirley-jackson/theme-symbol-motif

Activity Overview


Themes, symbols, and motifs come alive when you use a storyboard. In this activity, students will identify themes and symbols from the story, and support their choices with details from the text. As a classroom activity, students can track the rich thematic writing Jackson uses throughout "The Lottery".

Themes, Motifs, and Symbols

The Dangers of Blindly Following Tradition

The lottery is held every year on the same day, and the people know the process so well that they only half-listen to Mr. Summers’ instructions. The children are so excited that they gather stones. It seems that the people have forgotten most of the other pomp and circumstance that goes along with this event, other than the importance of the box and the stoning. As the names are called, Mr. Adams remarks to Old Man Warner, the oldest man in the village, that other villages are giving up the lottery tradition. Old Man Warner replies, “Pack of crazy fools. Listening to young folks, nothing’s good enough for them. Next thing you know, they’ll be wanting to go back to living in caves, nobody work any more, live that way for a while. … There’s always been a lottery.” Old Man Warner’s comments seem to encompass the importance that all of the villagers place on this tradition, despite the seemingly progressive villages nearby.


The Inversion of Family Dynamics

This story turns the dynamics of family on its head. Before the lottery, the families seem quite normal, standing together or wives gathered together discussing their husbands. When Mrs. Hutchinson discovers that her husband Bill has drawn the bad slip of paper, she immediately yells to Mr. Summers that he didn’t allow Bill enough time to draw the right slip of paper, seemingly defensive of her husband. However, when Bill is asked if there are any other households Tessie tries to offer up her eldest daughter Eva, and Eva’s husband Don. When Tessie discovers the black dot on her slip of paper, even her children become a part of the mob. They are gleeful when they see that they have drawn blank papers, and they do not seem to show concern about their mother’s fate. Someone even hands little Davy pebbles to throw.


The Mob Mentality

The townspeople are governed by a mob mentality that pushes them to willingly participate in the barbaric tradition. The teenage boys carefully select the roundest, smoothest stones at the beginning of the story, and seem to enjoy the camaraderie that the lottery event creates. At the end, when Tessie is chosen as “the winner”, the women with whom she was just having conversations happily pick up stones to throw at her. Mrs. Dunbar is upset that she can’t keep up with the crowd, Old Man Warner urges the crowd on, and even Tessie’s children stone their own mother.


The Box

The box represents tradition for the villagers. Even though it is deteriorating and Mr. Summers discusses making a new one every year, the villagers do not like to upset tradition. Ironically, when it is not in use, it sits as a dust collector in Mr. Graves’ barn, or Mr. Martin’s grocery store. It is also a symbol of fear; the villagers make sure to keep their distance from it as it sits on the stool in the square. They know that in the box are the slips of paper that will decide their fates. That makes it a symbol of power over life and death as well.


The Stones

The children take great care in collecting the most perfect murder weapons, stones that are the roundest and smoothest they can find. They put them in piles and guard them, like treasure. The stones give them the power over someone’s life and death, which is a significant moment in their lives. The stones are a source of fear as well as power and camaraderie, both for the person who is chosen and for those who are anxious to be part of the mob that grows from the tradition.The switch from this very orderly, structured lottery drawing with paper to the stones also represents the village’s frightening change from civilized to utter brutality in the matter of moments.


The Black Dot

The black dot represents impending death. For Tessie, the dot means she has been chosen to die in this twisted, festive event. The dot also brings to an end the “fairness” she found in all of the other lotteries she’s participated in before now.


Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 9-12

Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)

Type of Assignment Individual or Partner

Type of Activity: Themes, Symbols & Motifs

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/9-10/3] Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/9-10/5] Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure a text, order events within it (e.g., parallel plots), and manipulate time (e.g., pacing, flashbacks) create such effects as mystery, tension, or surprise
  • [ELA-Literacy/SL/9-10/2] Integrate multiple sources of information presented in diverse media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) evaluating the credibility and accuracy of each source


Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)



Student Instructions

Create a storyboard that identifies recurring themes in "The Lottery". Illustrate instances of each theme and write a short description below each cell.


  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. Identify the theme(s) from "The Lottery" you wish to include and replace the "Theme 1" text.
  3. Create an image for an example that represents this theme.
  4. Write a description of each of the examples.



Rubric

(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)



Themes, Symbols, and Motifs (Grades 9-12)
Create a storyboard that identifies recurring themes, symbols, and/or motifs in the story. Illustrate instances of each and write a short description that explains the example's significance.
Proficient Emerging Beginning Needs Improvement
Identification of Theme(s), Symbol(s), and/or Motif(s)
All themes are correctly identified as important recurring topics or messages in the story. Symbols are correctly identified as objects that represent something else at a higher level in the story. Motifs are correctly identified as important recurring features or ideas in the story.
Most themes are correctly identified, but others are missing or incomplete. Most symbols are correctly identified, but some objects are missing or incomplete. Some motifs are correctly identified, but others are missing or incomplete.
Most themes are missing, incomplete, or incorrect. Most symbols are missing, incomplete, or incorrect. Most motifs are missing, incomplete, or incorrect.
No themes, symbols, or motifs are correctly identified.
Examples and Descriptions
Quotes and examples are accurate to the theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s) that are being identified. Descriptions accurately explain the theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s) and highlight their significance to the story.
Most quotes and examples are accurate to the theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motifs that are being identified. Descriptions mostly accurately explain the theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s), and highlight their significance to the story.
Most quotes and examples are minimal, incorrect, or unrelated to the theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s) that are being identified. Descriptions contain inaccuracies in their explanations, or do not highlight their significance to the story.
Examples and descriptions are missing or too minimal to score.
Depiction
Depictions chosen for theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s) are accurate to the story and reflect time, effort, thought, and care with regard to placement and creation of the scenes.
Depictions chosen for theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s) are mostly accurate to the story. They reflect time and effort put into placement and creation of the scenes.
Depictions chosen for theme(s), symbol(s), and/or motif(s) are inaccurate to the story. The depictions may be rushed or show minimal effort, time, and care put into placement and creation of the scenes.
Most depictions are missing too many elements or are too minimal to score. Little time or effort has been put into placement and creation of the scenes.
English Conventions
There are no errors in spelling, grammar, or mechanics throughout the storyboard. All writing portions reflect careful proofreading and accuracy to the story.
There are a few errors in spelling, grammar, and mechanics throughout the storyboard. All writing portions show accuracy to the story and some proofreading.
There are several errors in spelling, grammar, and mechanics throughout the storyboard. Most writing portions do not reflect proofreading or accuracy to the story.
Errors in spelling, grammar, and mechanics in writing portions of the storyboard seriously interfere with communication.




More Storyboard That Activities for

The Lottery





Education Pricing

This pricing structure is only available to academic institutions. Storyboard That accepts purchase orders.

Single Teacher

Single Teacher

As low as /month

Start My Trial

Department

Department

As low as /month

Learn More

School

School/District

As low as /month

Learn More

*(This will start a 2-Week Free Trial - No Credit Card Needed)
View All Teacher Resources
https://www.storyboardthat.com/lesson-plans/the-lottery-by-shirley-jackson/theme-symbol-motif
© 2020 - Clever Prototypes, LLC - All rights reserved.
Over 15 Million Storyboards Created
Storyboard That Family