Lesson 1 (from Chapter 1)
In the opening chapter of the book, the reader is immediately confronted with death - Madrone is unable to heal Consuelo, she recently lost her lover Sandy, and the City is celebrating the Day of the Reaper. Today's objective is to talk about experiences, fears, attitudes, and ways of commemorating death.
1. Have each student share with the class their personal experiences surrounding death and loss.
2. In smaller groups, have students discuss why the author chose to introduce death as a topic in the beginning of the book. What are the characters experiences of death in the book? How do the characters react to being confronted with death?
3. As a class, have the students talk about the pros and cons of talking about death. Have the students discuss why death is ritualized.
4. Homework: Have each student research the way that death is commemorated in various cultures...
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