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Lesson Plan by Lauren Martin M.Ed.

Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee

This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings plays to life with comics and storyboards.

Make plays come to life with comics!

Including these awesome activities:
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Featured Layouts

When students complete the activities in this lesson plan, they will use the following comic layout types.

  • Character Map
  • Storyboard
  • Graphic Novel
  • Mind Map
  • Poster

Your students will create amazing images like these in no time!

This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings plays to life with comics and storyboards.
Pixton Lesson Plan on Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings plays to life with comics and storyboards.

Main Characters

Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee

When you import any of the activities below, you can choose to share these ready-made characters with your students.

  • Bertram Cates from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Bertram Cates

    24-year-old trial defendant and science teacher who taught evolution

  • Matthew Harrison Brady from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Matthew Harrison Brady

    Christian fundamentalist who leads prosecution and defends creationism

  • Henry Drummond from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Henry Drummond

    Famous lawyer who defends Cates and supports freedom of thought

  • E. K. Hornbeck from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    E. K. Hornbeck

    Journalist who covers trial for Baltimore Herald who supports Cates and criticizes Brady

  • Rev. Jeremiah Brown from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Rev. Jeremiah Brown

    Hillsboro's religious authority who preaches fear and punishment

  • Rachel Brown from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Rachel Brown

    Daughter of Reverend Brown and fellow teacher and friend of Cates

  • The Judge from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    The Judge

    Impartial, fair, religious fundamentalist judge presiding over Cates’ trial

  • Meeker from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Meeker

    Courthouse bailiff who jokes that Cates is dangerous while letting him out of his jail cell

  • Mrs. Brady from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Mrs. Brady

    Matthew Harrison Brady’s wife

  • Melinda Loomis from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Melinda Loomis

    12-year-old girl who believes in the Bible and fears the theory of evolution

  • Howard Blair from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Howard Blair

    Cates’ student who misunderstands evolution and is used to testify against Cates

  • Mrs. Krebs from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Mrs. Krebs

    Outspoken Hillsboro woman who supports Brady

  • Tommy Stebbins from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Tommy Stebbins

    Unbaptized 11-year-old boy who drowned, Cats stops attending church when Rev. Brown says he is damned

  • Mr. Bannister from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Mr. Bannister

    Illiterate juror who has never read Darwin nor the Bible

  • Elijah from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Elijah

    Illiterate mountain man who sells and preaches the Bibles to the townspeople

  • Mayor from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Mayor

    Mayor of Hillsboro who supports Brady

  • Tom Davenport from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Tom Davenport

    Local district attorney who assists Brady with the trial

  • Harry Y. Esterbrook from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Harry Y. Esterbrook

    Chicago radio host who broadcasts the verdict and cuts off Brady's victory speech

  • Jesse H. Dunlap from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Jesse H. Dunlap

    Farmer, cabinetmaker and potential juror who Drummond dismisses because he supports Brady

  • Sillers from Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee
    Sillers

    Local feed store employee and juror

Featured Props

Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee

Student creations come alive with these themed objects – in addition to our library of over 3,000 props!

  • Book
    Book
  • Booth
    Booth
  • Briefcase
    Briefcase
  • Courthouse
    Courthouse
  • Gavel
    Gavel
  • Jail
    Jail
  • Mic
    Mic
  • Monkey
    Monkey
  • Room
    Room
  • Station
    Station
Print this Teacher Guide

Teacher Guide

Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee

Step 1Class discussion with students

Getting Started

Share the following:

  • In 1950, McCarthy claimed that there were over 200 “known communists” in the Department of State.
  • In 1954, the McCarthy investigated the U.S. Army for being “soft” on communism, and "McCarthyism" became synonymous with the practice of making public accusations (of treason and disloyalty) without evidence.
  • The 1955 play, Inherit the Wind, is a fictionalized portrayal of the 1925 Scopes "Monkey" Trial as a way to critique the 1954 McCarthy trials.
  • The Scopes "Monkey" Trial, was an American legal case in 1925 in which a substitute high school teacher, John Scopes, was accused of violating Tennessee's Butler Act, which had made it unlawful to teach human evolution in any state-funded school. Scopes purposely incriminated himself to gain national publicity for the Fundamentalist–Modernist Controversy
    • Modernists said the theory of evolution was not inconsistent with religion and that modern science should be taught in schools
    • Fundamentalists did not want the theory of evolution taught in schools because they believed it contradicted the creationist teachings of the Bible.

Opening Discussion

Have students review the front and back cover of the play, examine the cover images, read the book jacket summary, discuss the significance of the title, compare the underlying issues of the McCarthy and Scopes "Monkey" trials, and make a prediction about the content of the play.

Step 2Pixton comic-making activities
  • Make a Character Map
    Character Map

    Begin at the start of the text, and make additions throughout the reading.

    View Activity
  • Make a Storyboard
    Symbolism & Motif

    Track throughout the text and complete after reading.

    View Activity
  • Make a Storyboard
    Major Themes

    Complete after class reading and discussion.

    View Activity
  • Extension / Modification
    Graphic Novel (Extension / Modification)

    Illustrate a Graphic Novel version of the text.

  • Extension / Modification
    Mind Map (Extension / Modification)

    Create a Mind Map to compare and contrast the play with its film version.

  • Extension / Modification
    Poster (Extension / Modification)

    Research the McCarthy and Scopes Trials and create a *Poster to display research findings.

Step 3Concluding discussion with students

Discuss the following:

  • Compare and contrast the characters in the story.
  • Were you surprised by any of the characters' motives, choices or actions? Why or why not?
  • What were the main themes of the story?
  • What were the major symbols and motifs? What made them important?
  • What do you think the climax of the story was?
  • What was the author's purpose in writing this story?
  • What was the text's overall tone (author's attitude) and mood (reader's reaction)?
  • How might the context of when this text was written influence the content and themes?
  • How were the McCarthy and Scopes "Monkey" trials similar? What was the underlying issue being fought for?
  • Why would the playwrights illustrate the "Monkey" trial in order to critique the McCarthy trial?
Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Inherit the Wind 1 Character Map

Featured Layouts

  • Character Map

Intro

Determining character traits is an important skill necessary to understanding the conflicts and themes of the plot. The characteristics that make up the main character and supporting characters help shape the outcome of the narrative.

Instructions

Choose three of your favorite characters from the text and create a Character Map for each one.

  • It's important to add as many details as you can to all the parts of the map.
  • Include an appropriate illustration based on the character traits outlined in the novel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Character Map

Use this interactive rubric for easy, thorough assessment. It can even be used by students for self-assessment!

5 4 3 2 1
Overview The character map is thoughtful; descriptions are detailed and informative. The character map is fully developed; accurate details and insightful descriptions. The character map is complete; descriptions are simple and settings are accurate. The character map includes basic details, but is not fully developed. The character map does not accurately reflect the characters.
Meaning Ideas, information and use of detail • strong point of view
• summary is clear and highly detailed
• descriptions are thoughtful and highly developed
• significant details that make characters unique and dynamic
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• summary is clear and accurate
• logical descriptions that clarify and develop the idea
• characters are similar; includes relevant details
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• summary is short, but accurate
• descriptions are simple and consistent
• characters similar to description
• some relevant ideas
• summary has several errors
• descriptions are brief and lack detail
• characters vaguely looks like description
• often very brief
• summary is has significant errors
• descriptions are difficult to follow
• characters do not look like description
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • language is clear, varied
• flows smoothly; variety in sentences
• images and characters are fully developed; high attention to detail
• language is clear with some variety
• includes a variety of sentence lengths and patterns
• images and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structures with a few variations
• images and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• repeats a few basic sentence structures
• images and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• images and characters are poorly developed
Form Organization and sequence • proper organization
• panels are thoughtful and detailed
• all panels are organized or logical
• all panels are present
• most panels are organized or logical
• all panels are present
• some panels are organized or logical
• some panels may be missing
• panels are not organized or logical
• panels are missing
Conventions The text demonstrates standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses eloquent words, rich sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses precise words, controlled sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates standard English conventions
• uses words and phrases, telling details and sensory language to convey a vivid picture
• demonstrates some accuracy in standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • contains multiple inaccuracies in Standard English conventions of usage and mechanics
Total
Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Inherit the Wind 2 Symbolism & Motif

Featured Layouts

  • Storyboard

Intro

A symbol is an object that represents a deeper meaning than what is on the surface. The use of symbolic images by an author is usually used to help develop the characters and theme. A motif is a recurring idea or literary device that enhances the theme.

Instructions

In a Storyboard, illustrate at least three of the major symbols and/or motifs:

  • Identify the symbol/motif in the panel title
  • Write an explanation as to why the symbol/motif is important
  • Include an appropriate illustration

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Symbolism & Motif

Use this interactive rubric for easy, thorough assessment. It can even be used by students for self-assessment!

5 4 3 2 1
Overview The symbolism is highly developed; examples have significant purpose and engage the reader. The symbolism is well developed; examples are specific and provide sufficient support. The symbolism is briefly discussed; examples are accurate but not fully explained. The symbolism is briefly discussed; vague or irrelevant examples. The symbolism is not identified; lacks any supporting examples.
Meaning Ideas, information and use of detail • strong point of view
• develops ideas clearly and logically with details, examples, and descriptions
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• logical descriptions or examples clarify and develop the ideas
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• examples or descriptions are simple and consistent
• few relevant ideas
• examples or descriptions may be poorly developed or illogical
• ideas are not developed
• few details or descriptions
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • language is clear, varied
• flows smoothly; variety in sentences
• images and characters are fully developed; high attention to detail
• language is clear with some variety
• includes a variety of sentence lengths and patterns
• images and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structures with a few variations
• images and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• repeats a few basic sentence structures
• images and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• images and characters are poorly developed
Form Organization and sequence (supporting examples identified) • proper organization
• examples are properly referenced
• panels are thoughtful and detailed
• all panels are organized or logical
• examples are properly referenced
• all panels are present
• most panels are organized or logical
• examples are properly referenced
• all panels are present
• some panels are organized or logical
• examples are not/improperly referenced
• some panels may be missing
• panels are not organized or logical
• examples are not referenced
• panels are missing
Conventions The text demonstrates standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses eloquent words, rich sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses precise words, controlled sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates standard English conventions
• uses words and phrases, telling details and sensory language to convey a vivid picture
• demonstrates some accuracy in standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • contains multiple inaccuracies in Standard English conventions of usage and mechanics
Total
Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Inherit the Wind 3 Major Themes

Featured Layouts

  • Storyboard

Intro

Discuss the themes in the text. Ask students to identify what truths about life or people they understood better after reading this text.

Instructions

In a Storyboard, illustrate at least three of the major themes:

  • Write the theme in the panel title
  • Create an image that summarizes the theme
  • Include dialogue or a description that fits the theme

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Major Themes

Use this interactive rubric for easy, thorough assessment. It can even be used by students for self-assessment!

5 4 3 2 1
Overview The theme is highly developed; examples have significant purpose and are highly detailed. The theme is well developed; examples are specific and provide ample support. The theme is briefly discussed; examples are accurate but not fully explained. The theme is poorly discussed; vague or irrelevant examples. The theme is not identified; lacks any supporting examples.
Meaning Ideas, information and use of detail • strong point of view
• develops ideas clearly and logically with details, examples, and descriptions
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• logical descriptions or examples clarify and develop the ideas
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• examples or descriptions are simple and consistent
• few relevant ideas
• examples or descriptions may be poorly developed or illogical
• ideas are not developed
• few details or descriptions
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • language is clear, varied
• flows smoothly; variety in sentences
• images and characters are fully developed; high attention to detail
• language is clear with some variety
• includes a variety of sentence lengths and patterns
• images and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structures with a few variations
• images and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• repeats a few basic sentence structures
• images and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• images and characters are poorly developed
Form Organization and sequence • proper organization
• examples are properly referenced
• panels are thoughtful and detailed
• all panels are organized or logical
• examples are properly referenced
• all panels are present
• most panels are organized or logical
• examples are properly referenced
• all panels are present
• some panels are organized or logical
• examples are not/improperly referenced
• some panels may be missing
• panels are not organized or logical
• examples are not referenced
• panels are missing
Conventions The text demonstrates standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses eloquent words, rich sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses precise words, controlled sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates standard English conventions
• uses words and phrases, telling details and sensory language to convey a vivid picture
• demonstrates some accuracy in standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • contains multiple inaccuracies in Standard English conventions of usage and mechanics
Total

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