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Project Profile

Project Title:
Let's Inspire Change
Initiative:
Literacy in Action - Listen, I Read
School Name:
Ecole McIsaac School
School board / First Nations school jurisdiction:
Flin Flon School Division
Project Theme:
  • Lead [leadership]
Grade Level:
7
Subject Areas:
The Arts, English, Social Sciences and Humanities
City:
Flin Flon
Province/Territory:
Manitoba
Community Partners:
Students will be interview businesses and social service agencies in the area pertaining to their issue. No one has been contacted at this time.

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Let's Inspire Change

LISTEN, I READ
BOOK: AIRBORN
AUTHOR: KENNETH OPPEL

Visual Essay
Students will read Airborn and among other activities, discuss the qualities of leadership in the main character, Matt Cruse. They will make connections between themselves and Matt. Throughout the novel the idea of standing up for something you are passionate about will be studied and students will use what they learn to create a video essay persuading others to join them in making a difference. They will make connections to the novel and use examples of tactics that Matt used to get people to take action. Students will need to research a social justice or environmental issue that is affecting Flin Flon and think of/find creative solutions that they can ask people to get involved with. The class will work in groups of 4 or 5 and will each complete a video.

Update (February-12-13)

My 2011/2012 grade 7 class was lucky to receive a set of Airborn novels by Kenneth Oppel. They were intrigued by the novel right away and interested to learn that it was written by a Canadian. We read most of the novel together, and the class was always sad to end for the day and eager to begin reading again. I liked that there was challenging vocabulary and they liked all of the action mixed with romantic tension. They were just waiting for the big kiss. They were always on the internet researching possible real life inspirations that they came up with in their spare time and they even Google translated how to pronounce some of the tricky names.

Throughout the novel we brainstormed for our final video essay topic. As a class we had a huge web of possible “paragraph” topics for Matt’s heroism including page references and evidence. When we had finished reading, they broke off into groups and undertook the task of choosing, organizing, and filming all of their evidence.

They were thrilled to meet with Kenneth Oppel. The Skype meeting was a chance for them to relate the fictional book world to reality. They had all kinds of questions about how to become writers: questions that wouldn’t normally come up with the usual novel studies. They were given an amazing opportunity to speak with someone that they had so much respect for and were able to ask him whatever they wanted. It was so useful to their understanding of the novel, because when we were reading, we made all kinds of assumptions about why the characters were written in the way that they were and about where the ideas for the settings and events may have come from and then they were able to ask about these things and clarify them with the one person that can really answer questions about the novel. The author interview boosted their excitement about the book and about reading in general because now they all want to read the rest of the series. Speaking with Kenneth Oppel inspired them not only to go out and read, but it created in them the idea that writing and being recognized for it might be possible; it linked dreams with reality.

Although our videos were not perfected in the craze of the end of the year, we, as a class, thoroughly enjoyed the anticipation of receiving the books, the action and adventure in a novel that was so relatable, and the opportunity to see and interview the author behind the novel that they loved so much. Thank you.