World Lit: Culture Wheel

Standard: ELAGSE9-10RL4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (e.g., how the language evokes a sense of time and place; how it sets a formal or informal tone.)

Learning Target: I can analyze the cumulative impact of using words from the Ibo language on the tone and meaning of the novel.

Opening Session: Today we’re going to begin talking about our novel, Things Fall Apart. In order to get you ready to read this, I want to do a little art project! So I’m going to pass around sheets of paper and circles to trace around, because we’re going to make a culture wheel. As I’m giving directions for our Work Session, go ahead and copy the pronunciation guide on page 225 of your Springboard onto one side of your circle. Then, turn your circle over and we will begin making our culture wheels!

Work Session: If you will please turn to page 226 in your book, you’ll find a glossary of Ibo words and phrases. Read over these, then look at the culture wheel on page 227. Copy the words and phrases from the glossary into the culture wheel in the appropriate section. For example, agbala means “woman; also used for a man who has taken no title” and you’d  probably copy that into the gender roles section of the wheel. Do this for each word.

After you’ve decided where each word goes, grab your paper circle and recreate the culture wheel – WITH PICTURES! Make a cool, colorful, graphic visual aid to remind you where each word goes on the culture wheel. Caption your pictures with the appropriate words, and make these look cool, because I want to hang them up around the room!

Closing Session: If you’re done, go hang up your culture wheel! Otherwise, you should finish it  for homework over your Tuesday break. See you guys on Wednesday!


  1. Harmattan
  2. Improvident
  3. Haggard
  4. Plaintive
  5. Mirth
  6. Clan
  7. Orator
  8. Gnashed
  9. Capricious
  10. Incipient

Assessment: Informal (art project)

Differentiation: Process (learning style)

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