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Lesson Plan

Comparing a Literary Work to Its Film Interpretation

E-mail / Share / Print This Page / Print All Materials (Note: Handouts must be printed separately)

Grades 9 – 12
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Five 60-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Lisa L. Owens

Lisa L. Owens

Issaquah, Washington


International Literacy Association


Materials and Technology

Student Interactives






  • TV/DVD player

  • Computers with Internet access

  • The Pit and the Pendulum directed by Roger Corman (MGM, 1961)

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Persuasion Map

Grades   3 – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Persuasion Map

The Persuasion Map is an interactive graphic organizer that enables students to map out their arguments for a persuasive essay or debate.


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1. Obtain and familiarize yourself with Edgar Allan Poe's original short story "The Pit and the Pendulum" and the 1961 film adaptation The Pit and the Pendulum directed by Roger Corman. Make copies of the short story for every student in your class.

2. For background information about Edgar Allan Poe, visit the Poe Museum website.

3. Highlight the opening passage from the short story and screen the film's opening scenes as described in Session 1 (Step 9). Note that this lesson assumes students will screen the film during two separate class sessions. Session lengths, however, can be flexible to accommodate your classroom schedule-as such, you will want to determine the best stopping point for the first screening based on your ideal session length. The film runs for approximately 120 minutes.

4. If your classroom does not have computers with Internet access, reserve Session 5 in your school's computer lab. Bookmark and familiarize yourself with the online Persuasion Map graphic organizer. Check to make sure that computers have the most recent version of the Flash plug-in (which can be downloaded for free from the ReadWriteThink.org Site Tools page). You may wish to print a sample persuasion map for reference. Alternatively, you can print a blank Persuasion Map and make photocopies for class distribution.

5. Print and make copies of the Persuasive Writing Rubric.

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