Compare and Contrast Characters in The Watsons Go to Birmingham

Christopher Paul Curtis's award-winning novel The Watsons Go to Birmingham provides the text for a compare and contrast essay in which writers analyze the similarities and differences between two of the novel's characters.

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CCSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas
  • Add an example—during direct instruction model for learners how to craft a compare and contrast essay using information from the graphic organizer
  • For guided instruction, repeat the process using suggestions from the class
  • Challenge participants to brainstorm pairs of characters that would make interesting subjects for the essay
Classroom Considerations
  • The lesson comes with a caution that the material in the novel may be sensitive to some scholars
  • Presumes the class has previously studied how to craft a compare and contrast essay
  • Requires individual copies of Christopher Paul Curtis's The Watsons Go to Birmingham 
  • Class members should have finished reading the novel
  • Writers need access to computers linked to a printer
Pros
  • Includes extensions and suggestions for differentiation
Cons
  • None