Setting Scanning

By Peter Weiss, December 29, 2008

Grade Level

  • High School


  • School Design

Subject Area

  • Language Arts
  • Technology

Lesson Time

1 sixty minute period


Students will have had the lesson on Seize the Day and its setting and working with the issue of Tommy's surroundings and modifications of it so as to change the emotional affect it has upon  him, or to posit ideas as to how to do so.

Operational questions:

  • What is our school scanning setting?
  • How was it designed?
  • What moods does it evoke in you?
  • How does scanning function in theory? In actuality?

Identify The Problem:

 Given the questions above and what you have learned about setting from the previous lesson dealing with Seize the Day:

 Identify a physical problem with the scanning area from the experiences of the members of your group in scanning.

Investigate the problem:  Gather information from the people in the group and your first-hand experiences in scanning.

National Standards


1. Uses the general ski lls and strategies of the writing process

2. Uses the stylistic and rhetorical aspects of writing

3. Uses grammatical and mechanical conventions in written compositions

4. Gathers and uses information for research purposes


5.  Uses the general skills and strategies of the reading process

6. Uses reading skills and strategies to understand and interpret a variety of literary texts


9. Uses viewing skills and strategies to understand and interpret visual media

10. Understands the characteristics and components of the media

Common Core Standards

Anchors for Reading:

Key Ideas and Details:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.1 Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.R.3 Analyze how and why individuals, events, or ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.

Anchor Standards for Writing:

Text Types and Purposes:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details and well-structured event sequences.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

Range of Writing:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.W.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.

Anchor standards for Speaking and Listening:

Comprehension and Collaboration:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.1 Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.SL.2 Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.

Anchor standards for Language:

Conventions of Standard English:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.L.1 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.CCRA.L.2 Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.


Students will be able to:

  • compare and contrast with detailed accuracy
  • associate setting to theme and discuss connections
  • discuss theme and setting in relation to time and universality
  • apply setting in a text to real-life setting applications


Physical setting of Seize the Day as viewed on field trip Physical setting of school scanning area


  • charting materials
  • any materials needed for group products


physical setting- actual location of a place metaphor--in this case to mean symbolic representation, as a genre cultural affiliation--that cultural identification you feel, a character belongs to


Aim: How can we design a scanning area that will accomplish its goal yet not evoke negative feelings?

Do Now: What in this school makes you feel happy?  Alive?  Alert? Sad? Depressed? Frame and reframe the problem by looking at it context.

Motivation:  Absent being able to get rid of scanning, how could it make you feel better than it does now? Generate possible physical solutions to the negative connotations of scanning and formulate a physical issue of it by brainstorming.

Procedure:  Students will be grouped in same groups from previous lesson dealing with setting for Seize the Day

  • Each group will work as a team to identify a problem with scanning and how scanning makes them feel collectively and individually
  • Each group will work as a team to develop design solutions that would be geared toward changing the physical and emotional scanning setting and depict what it would look like if they were to modify the area. Develop and generate depiction of best (agreed upon) solution to issue and brought to group by memebers. This is editing and developing ideas that have been generated.
Group work will take approximately 30-40 minutes and each group will complete:
  • one chart/picture/series of charts or pictures depicting scanning surroundings as they believe it will be improved or correct the identified issues with the area as is
  • a description in words to match the selection above
  • a statement of how their solution could be implemented and what effect it might have on the entry to school. Implementation of generated solutions.
  • Presentations will take about 15 minutes. Each group will present their product(s) and speak accountably to what they selected and why and how they produced what they did.  Evaluation and feedback for consideration for improvement.


Summary:   Assimilation and re-evaluation; application in terms of design process and understanding of setting with a novel.

  • How did you go about finding the aspect of scanning you chose?
  • How does it address the problem with scanning?
  • What in your solution will work toward rectifying the issues in scanning?
  • How has your sense of your surroundings changed (if it has) after looking at Seize the Day’s setting as we have?  How do we design surroundings to influence our emotional well-being?  Why?  How do the surroundings we are in at any given time reflect the themes behind where we are at?
  • How is setting crafted to match theme?  How does such design work in your life?


  • Charts and lists from groups
  • Written individual descriptions and group description to be collected
  • Homework assignment relating setting to theme of novel asking how the setting came to be and why it fits or not.

Enrichment Extension Activities

Homework Assignment (choose 1)

  • Use three different songs you listen to for tone and find a setting in the physical world that matches the tone.  Compare the setting you find to settings in the song's videos.  or
  • Pick one aspect of your home, block, neighborhood, etc.   Identify the emotion it evokes in you or an incongruity between its design and its function.  How would you redesign it to change the emotion evoked or to be more functional?

Responses to this may be in any form from words to models, and this would be the project to then be adapted to the discussion of settings of novels and how they are designed.

Students will complete a field trip to Broadway and the Hotel Ansonia on Broadway between 73rd and 74th.  Students will look at the hotel, inside and out and walk the streets.  Students will note restaurants, shops, newsstands, fast food, and the people.  Students will thus see how the neighborhood is now.


Culminating project to unify the unit will be to identify four aspects of the neighborhood that could be changed so as to affect current inhabitants differently.  Each group will be assigned one aspect and repeat the process of identifying and rectifying the problem of that aspect of the neighborhood so that it is made to affect the inhabitants differently emotionally than Tommy was affected, than they, the class were affected.  Reevaluation and real life application to begin framing questions in their own neighborhoods.

Teacher Reflection

Students were quite successful. Students were able to chart and detail the setting. They enjoyed it and liked the variety of what had been selected. The assessments showed how perceptions differ even of the same materials, and that students have preferred methods by which they learn and record their learning. Students need to revisit close textual reading and finding of detail. Students liked the hands-on of it, and the taking of the book outside of the text and onto the streets.  What made this successful was that they did it all. I'd pick certain places I wanted included

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