Searching for America, Volume Four: Slavery and Freedom (Digital Download)
Searching for America: How do you teach classic American literature and great moments in American history in a meaningful and impactful way? Searching for America takes some of America's greatest works of fiction and non-fiction and adapts them into Reader's Theater script-stories. Let your students live the excitement of classic texts like The Autobiography of Frederick Douglass, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, African-American folktales, The Adventure of Tom Sawyer, and The Red Badge of Courage. Then allow them to design a video-game-style fighter based on a fictional character with Clash of the Characters, a tournament to see who has the mightiest fists in all of fiction.
Each script-story in this collection is approximately 30-50 minutes and intended for use with students from 6th-12th grade. A 2-page teacher guide complete with background information, summary, recall questions, teachable terms, and discussion questions accompanies each script.
Volume Four: Slavery and Freedom Volume Four of Searching for America contains 12 script-stories which dramatize fiction and non-fiction selections:
- The People Could Fly (a compilation of African-American folktales)
- Life of an American Slave (Frederick Douglass's Autobiography: Part I)
The Battle of Mr. Covey (Frederick Douglass's Autobiography: Part II)
- The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (featuring Tom's famous whitewashing escapade)
- Huckleberry Finn: Part I
- Huckleberry Finn: Part II
- Huckleberry Finn: Part III
- Huckleberry Finn: Part IV
- Huckleberry Finn: Part V
- Huckleberry Finn: Part VI
The Red Badge of Courage: Part I
The Red Badge of Courage: Part II
Bonus Activity: The Clash of the Characters Game
Details: 191-page PDF download
For a DIGITAL CLASS SET version that breaks each individual script-story into its own file and gives teachers permission to use the files digitally, click here.
Samples: To view free materials that supplement this textbook, including sample script-stories, click here.
Free Reading Guides: Free reading guides are also available for Moby Dick: Parts I-VI. Click here to find out more.
- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Ernest Hemingway famously commented that all American Literature began with Huckleberry Finn and rightly so. The friendship between Huck and Jim is a seminal moment in American Literature, but how do you make this classic text accessible to modern students? This version of the story removes the novel's racial slurs and softens the dialects some but keeps the razor-sharp condemnation of racism in tact. For the first time, students can experience this classic firsthand.
The Autobiography of Frederick Douglass Erudite and insightful, Frederick Douglass's life story is a firsthand look at the evils of slavery. Two script-stories dramatize portions of his life story. The first deals with his childhood on a Maryland plantation and his experiences teaching himself to read while in the home of Hugh and Sophia Auld. The second deals with Douglass's experiences on the farm of Mister Covey, where he asserts his independence from slavery.
- The People Could Fly Celebrating the triumph of the human spirit over inhuman cruelty, this script-story combines common African-American folktales such as the tales of Brer Rabbit and the People Could Fly into a single narrative.
- The Red Badge of Courage As one of the world's first psychological novels, Stephen Crane's novel explores the inner turmoil of Henry Fleming, a young soldier fighting during the Civil War. These script-stories adapt the classic novel, while preserving the author's original psychological insights and astounding color imagery.
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer This script-story adapts a few scenes from Mark Twain's other famous work, including the whitewashing the fence episode.