(It is understood this is not necessarily the second lesson of the unit. Rather, it is a lesson which is suggested as useful during the course of the unit. The timing of it is dependent on teacher judgement.)
From what sources do we get our images about detectives?
The Listening Woman
The Daughter of Time
Eliciting, student writing, discussion
-Ask students if they know any detectives; if, perhaps, there is a family member who is a detective. Ask them if they think Sherlock Holmes is fairly typical. Ask them if (a detective popular on television at the time of the unit) is fairly typical.
-Ask them how valid they think their impression of the detective is.
-Have them write a description of their concept of the detective. Is he a man or a woman? How old is he/she? What does the detective look like -how tall, how heavy, blonde, scarred, muscular? Is the detective married? Does he/she like the job? Is the detective part of the police force or does he/she work alone. What factors might have caused the detective to choose that work?
-Collect the descriptions and hold for follow-up.
-Read to the class the section of
The Listening Woman
where Joe Leaphorn sits under the ledge watching the sunset immediately after he has learned about the murder of the man and girl. (The pages will vary according to the edition the teacher finds.)
-Read the opening pages of
Daughter of Time
which introduces Grant’s predicament.
-If it is possible to xerox pages from the two books, students may read silently or aloud depending on the teacher’s judgement of what method is most valuable to the particular class.
-Redistribute their descriptions and contrast the various characterizations. (One suspects their description will be heavily influenced by a character from television or the movies.)
-Are all the characterizations valid? Some? How are they arriving at that conclusion?
-Is Leaphorn “more” than a detective? Is Grant? On what basis are they making that decision?
Tell students to find any book in the
series or in the
series. Give them approximately two weeks to read the book they find.
(figure available in print form)
Ask them to chart the book’s plot after they have completed the reading as follows:
(A follow-up lesson which would probably be fun for students might be to have them exchange charts and figure out the solution from the clues. If some do, an important question for the teacher to ask is “If you know the murderer, is there any point to reading the book?)