Part 2 of 5: Comparing 4 Graphic Novels and 2 Webcomics Zombie Style

September 25, 2007 at 10:59 am (Comics and Graphic Novels, lesson plan) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

SappyMooseTree’s Flickr Zombie Sock Monkey

Link to: Sappymoosetree’s Flickr Photos

Preview and Objectives:

Part 2 of the “Comparing 4 Graphic Novels and 2 Webcomics Zombie Style” series begins with a reflective discussion on Part 1’s “Silent Gag Cartoon Exercise”. In groups, the learners will be introduced to the Reading Material for this Series, ultimately completing a Venn Diagram comparing and contrasting 2 of the reading materials.

Class Time Needed:

  • 1-50 Minute Class Session
  • Venn Diagram to be completed as Homework

National Standards for Arts Education Addressed:

  • Content Standard: 1: Understanding and applying media, techniques, and processes
  • Content Standard 2: Using knowledge of structures and functions
  • Content Standard 3: Choosing and evaluating a range of subject matter, symbols, and ideas
  • Content Standard 5: Reflecting upon and assessing the characteristics and merits of their work and the work of others

National Standards for English Addressed:

  • Content Standard 1: Reading for Perspective
  • Content Standard 2: Reading for Understanding
  • Content Standard 3: Evaluation Strategies
  • Content Standard 4: Communication Skills
  • Content Standard 5: Communication Strategies
  • Content Standard 6: Applying Knowledge
  • Content Standard 12: Applying Language Skills

The Reading Material for this Series:

PART 2 of 5:

A. Discussion: Suggested Questions:

1. What was the most challenging thing that you experienced during the Silent Gag Cartoon Exercise? Why was this?

2. What didn’t work well? Why do you think you had complications?

3. Did you enjoy drawing or creating captions better? Why?

4. Did you enjoy working with the clichés or with the more original ideas?

5. What surprised you?

6. Did you tend to be more serious or humorous in your approach?

B. Exploration of the Reading Material:

1. In groups of 3, each person will be assigned 2 graphic novels as follows:

a. Person 1: The Walking Dead (example of a more serious tone) and Kristy vs. the Zombie Army (Online Comic) (example of a more humorous tone)

b. Person 2: Zombee (example of a more serious tone) and Rotting in Dirtville (example of a more humorous tone)

c. Person 3: Zombie Tide (Online Comic) (example of a more serious tone) and The Goon: Nothin’ but Misery (example of a more humorous tone)

2. Hand out (1) a copy of the Venn Diagram for use in comparing the 2 graphic novels/webcomics and (2) a copy of criteria to keep in mind while reviewing these stores. The Venn Diagram will be completed as homework. Criteria to keep in mind as the stories are read include*:

Exposition

  • Does the writer capture the reader’s attention?
    • Does the artist capture the reader’s attention?
  • Is the writer’s theme or message clear to the reader?
    • Is the artist’s theme or message clear to the reader?
  • Does the writer describe a setting that creates an appropriate mood for the story?
    • Does the artist present a setting that creates an appropriate mood for the story?

Rising Action & Climax

  • Does the story build in intensity as it progresses toward the climax?
    • Do the graphics add to this?
  • Is the writer’s theme or message carried throughout the manuscript?
    • Could the same be said of the artist?
  • Is the writer’s theme or message developed/supported with vivid details?
    • Could the same be said of the artist?

Style

  • Use of creative language
    • Does the writer use creative language that adds meaning to the work?
      • Or does the language seem to interfere with the writer’s ability to communicate?
    • Does the writer use fresh, new language rather than clichés and other trite expressions?
    • Does the writer make his/her point clearly and concisely?
  • Does the style of the writing and graphics fit the content?
  • Does the point of view selected by the writer fit the content?

Syntax, Usage & Mechanics

  • Sentence structure
    • Is the sentence structure varied?
    • How does the language flow from one panel to the next?
    • How does the sentence structure add to or detract from the mood for the story?

3. Each person will:

  1. Take some more time at home to read the two graphic novels/webcomics and complete the Venn Diagram.
  2. Minimum Requirements: 5 contrasting features for Story #1, 5 contrasting features for Story #2, and 5 similarities
  3. BONUS: Create your own Venn Diagram using Excel or another spreadsheet program (for help, consult http://www.internet4classrooms.com/excel_venn.htm.) Save your file to a USB drive or email it to your instructor.

Venn Diagram

(Thumbnail to the Venn Diagram Printout. For full-size version, click here.)

Criteria for Evaluating Graphic Novels and Webcomics

(Thumbnail to the Criteria for evaluating graphic novels and webcomics. For full-size version, click here.)

*The criteria used for evaluating the graphic novels/webcomics is adapted from the Writing Tutor website.

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