5 — Analysing and comparing literary and informative texts
During the shared reading of Nanberry: Black Brother White by Jackie French, specific reading practices have been modelled and made explicit. In this sequence the students will discuss the class novel so far (having read at least to Chapter 10) and identify techniques the author has used to make the story engaging. They will then compare the novel with the other texts that they have been examining.
Further teaching strategies and resources can be found in the Resources.
Activity 1: Comparing Nanberry to factual texts
Lead the class in an in-depth discussion of the class novel and compare it to factual texts. ACELT1602
Ask the students what type of text Nanberry is: is it informative (factual), imaginative (narrative) or a combination? Discuss the features of historical narratives. Ask the students if the book attempts, either implicitly or explicitly, to persuade readers to any particular point of view. ACELA1490
Select a specific passage that deals with a historical fact (for example, the discovery of Nanberry, the smallpox epidemic or the death of Arabanoo). Compare this with a factual text that has been examined dealing with same fact. Ask the students how these texts differ and how they are similar (for example, language choices and description). Use a graphic organiser such as a Venn diagram to provide visual support. ACELA1489
Activity 2: Analysing points of view in a literary text
Use a strategy such as think-pair-share. In small groups the students will discuss the characters of Surgeon White, Nanberry and Maria and how points of view can be presented in literary texts. They will work with a set of question cards, or questions displayed on the interactive whiteboard to analyse this literary text. They should first think about their answer, share this with their group and then share with the class. ACELT1603, ACELT1604, ACELT1605, ACELY1688
Instructions for analysing points of view:
- Briefly have the students think about how they initially responded to each character. Did they like the character? Why or why not? What sort of person did they think this character was? Record these ideas on the interactive whiteboard, flip charts or a table to use in Sequence 6.
- Form the class into small groups and supply each group with an Analysing literary texts question card or display the questions for each character on the interactive whiteboard.
- Have students think about the questions by themselves first. Then discuss them with their group.
- Regroup and share with the class after each question has been discussed in the groups. The students should use evidence from the text to support their responses.