Our Right to Read, to Learn, and to Think: Ray Bradbury's Prediction

byElouise E. White-Beck

Fahrenheit 451 is the focus of this unit which utilizes Supreme Court decisions to illustrate how American laws and judgments determine who is allowed to learn, what they are allowed to learn, and where they may learn it. Issues of censorship and freedom to think are brilliantly depicted in Ray Bradbury's dystopian novel and his accuracy in predicting events occurring in today's world speaks to contemporary students. Taught in a 3-week time frame to 9th grade scholars, the unit provides background in Supreme Court cases involving education and continues through reading and discussion of both the novel and Francois Truffaut's 1966 film, with essay questions, video viewing forms, and a day-by-day reading schedule.

(Developed for English 1 Pittsburgh Scholars Program, grade 9; recommended for English 1 Scholars, grade 9)

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