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greatexpectsmall2.jpg INTRODUCTION

Welcome to our Year 9 study of graphic novels. In this unit, students should learn more about graphic novels by reading widely in this genre and by undertaking both a group inquiry approach and an individual inquiry. It is anticipated that students will read and study graphic novels over one term - one double period a week of class time will be provided. Some work may need to be completed at home - hence the creation of this wiki - and we may also use a class blog for students to record their progress as the unit develops.
This unit of work is being created in a collaborative effort between a Year 9 classroom teacher and a teacher-librarian - both of whom think that graphic novels have a lot to offer Year 9 students and both of whom love to encourage students to read. This unit will be a learning experience for the teachers as well as the students as we all create this wiki together.

skim_cover.gif UNIT OUTLINE

A. Group Inquiry

1. What is a Graphic Novel??

  • Students complete a pre-unit survey about their knowledge and experience of reading graphic novels (to determine the students' knowledge about graphic novels and to shape of the rest of the unit)
  • Students are introduced to a range of graphic novels by the Teacher-librarian (Library Book Chat)
  • Students then read at least 3 different types of graphic novels (authors, illustrators, plot...) and fill out a summary sheet
  • Individually, students use a Mind Map to organise their thoughts about the elements/characteristics that they have discovered in their readings (may need instruction in the use of colour, subheadings etc in Mind Maps - may need class brainstorm first about characteristics to identify eg plot, characters, setting, themes, presentation - colour, layout etc) - samples are provided on this wiki
  • In groups, students compare their Mind Maps - they can then create a group definition for "graphic novel"
  • Compare each group's definition (if this is to be the main focus of the unit, then students may wish to compare their definitions with "expert" definitions (ie from graphic novelists/sites etc - or teachertube) - check resources page

2. What makes a good graphic novel??
  • Students are encouraged to read at least 3 more graphic novels
  • Individually, determine their favourites and identify the criteria/characteristics they used - use a graphic novel format to organise their thoughts
  • Samples of these may be found on this wiki
  • Students may then present their conclusions as a persuasive oral to the class (they may use their graphic organsier as a visual aid) - with references to specific graphic novels to support their views)
3. Why should we read graphic novels?? Why should the school library buy graphic novels??
  • Student responses to this question could be presented in a number of ways - they may be offered a choice or the choice may be determined by time constraints or assessment needs or work schedules.

  • individual/group talks to the class/librarians/other classes
  • voice thread presentations
  • class debate "That we should/should not ...." by some/all of the students
  • Students voice their opinions on a class blog - which is linked to this wiki

B. Individual Inquiry
Students choose an area for individual study. They may read a number of graphic novels or pursue one author/illustrator or make comparisons. They may compare traditional novel formats with graphic novel formats. This is an opportunity for student choice - may offer them choice in terms of topic and/or presentation style (eg present responses on the class blog? on the class wiki? in other ways eg brochure, talk, debate....)

Possible topics:
  • Which is better - the novel or the graphic novel version?? (eg Redwall, Artemis Fowl, Magician's Apprentice, Agatha Christie, Stormbreaker, Point Blanc, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew ....)
  • Which Goosebumps story is captured best?? (comparison of the Goosebumps stories collected in the graphic format)
  • Which 5 graphic novels should the library purchase next and why??
  • Is colour necessary in a graphic novel??
  • Who is best....?
  • Which is better......?
  • How is a graphic novel different from a picture story book?