Taking a Stand: Shiloh

Students grapple with how a person develops values, identities, and beliefs, and explore what it means to stand up for what you believe in, while reading and discussing the novel Shiloh.

Unit Summary

In this unit, students begin to grapple with the overarching question of how a person develops values, identities, and beliefs while reading the novel Shiloh. Marty, the main character in Shiloh, sees someone mistreating a dog and thinks it’s his right and responsibility to step in to save the dog, even if the dog doesn’t belong to him. His action raises a question for readers about when an individual should step in to take a stand against what he/she believes to be an injustice. His action also causes readers to consider how different people, depending on their values, identities and beliefs, may have different opinions on what constitutes an injustice. Students will be challenged to take a stand on both of these ideas, based on the experiences and opinions of the different characters in Shiloh. Students will also be exposed to the idea of courage, and what it means to show courage, especially in situations where you are standing up for what you believe in. It is our hope that this unit will inspire students to grapple with these questions at a deeper level and understand the power of showing courage to fight for the things they believe in, no matter what obstacles they may face.

Shiloh was chosen as the text for this unit not only because of the powerful themes, but because of the way in which Phyllis Reynolds Naylor artfully develops the setting, characters and plot. In this unit, students will be challenged to think deeply about how the details an author includes help a reader better understand a character’s thoughts and actions. The setting of Shiloh in rural West Virginia in the 1970s allows students to deeply analyze how an author develops setting, and how the setting of a text influences the characters.  Finally, students will begin to notice how the point of view of a story influences the way a story is told. 

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Texts and Materials

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Core Materials

  • Book: Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2000)    —  890L

Assessment

These assessments accompany this unit to help gauge student understanding of key unit content and skills. Additional progress monitoring suggestions are included throughout the unit.

Unit Prep

Essential Questions

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  • How do beliefs, ethics, or values influence different people’s behaviors?
  • When should an individual take a stand against what he/she believes to be an injustice? What are the most effective ways to do this?
  • What does it mean to show courage?

Vocabulary

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Text-based

"fixing to" "whupping" 'em abused allowance antibiotics ashamed bargain bawl bawling blush blackmail bold bound courage cringe decency depend delight disgusted dusk dwell edgy enthusiasm envy flustered fond humble impact impatient influence infuriate intention jubilation licked meadow mission mistreated mournful obliged omission padlocked pen pester pitiful preach quavery quarrel regulation remedy rehearsed scale shame snoop squeals stumped suspicions sympathy tense threats ticks trousers tremble unfasten whirls witness yelps

Literary Term

dialect

Root/Affix

-ful anti- im- mis- un-

To see all the vocabulary for this course, view our 4th Grade Vocabulary Glossary.

Lesson Map

2

  • Shiloh — Ch. 1

    RL.4.3

Explain how Marty knew Shiloh was hurting.

11

  • Shiloh — Ch. 6

    RL.4.3

Analyze how Marty shows courage in his interactions with Judd Travers. 

12

  • Shiloh — Ch. 7

    RL.4.3

Describe how Marty is changing.

14Essential Task

Discussion & Writing

  • Shiloh — Ch. 5-8

    RL.4.3

    W.4.1

    W.4.1.a

    W.4.1.b

    SL.4.1

    L.4.3.c

Describe Marty.

19

  • Shiloh — Ch. 12

    RL.4.3

Describe the interaction between Judd Travers and Marty’s family.

20

  • Shiloh — Ch. 13

    RL.4.3

Predict what Marty and Judd will do next.

22

  • Shiloh — Ch. 15

    RL.4.3

Defend in what ways Marty opened his eyes.

25

Assessment

Common Core Standards

Core Standards

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L.4.1

L.4.1.e

L.4.1.f

L.4.2.d

L.4.3.a

L.4.3.c

RL.4.3

RL.4.6

SL.4.1

SL.4.1.a

SL.4.1.b

SL.4.1.c

SL.4.2

W.4.1

W.4.1.a

W.4.1.b

W.4.1.d

W.4.3

W.4.3.a

W.4.3.b

W.4.3.c

Spiral Standards

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L.4.2

L.4.3

L.4.4

L.4.4.b

L.4.5

L.4.6

RF.4.3

RF.4.4

RL.4.1

RL.4.10

RL.4.4

SL.4.6

W.4.10

W.4.4

W.4.5

W.4.6

W.4.9