The Crucible: Power

This lesson plan was written for a class of tenth grade college prep and honors level students at Abington Senior High School in Abington, Pennsylvania.

View/download the PDF here: [Lesson] (Crucible) Power

Date  10/20/15     Subject  The Crucible     Grade/Period 10th; 2nd Pd.

Topic Power in the Crucible   Standards   CC.1.3.9–10.A, CC.1.3.9–10.H, CC.1.5.9–10.D   


Lesson Purpose

Enduring Understandings

  • Power is addictive and corruptive.
  • Power is found in having something others do not have access to.
  • People use power to get what they want.

Specific Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • Analyze the development of a theme in The Crucible by evaluating which characters have power and why.
  • Discuss the corrupting nature of power in the Crucible

Essential Questions

  • How does an obsession with power affect one’s relationships and decisions?
  • What makes someone more powerful than someone else?


Assessment/Evaluation of SLOs


  •  None 


  • Morning Journal
  • Power Grids 


  • Write an argumentative paper that explains how the Crucible is a modern day allegory.


Materials & Resources

Teacher Provides

  • PowerPoint (Including “Today in English” slides.)
  • Paper
  • Journals
  • Computer Paper

Student Provides

  • Pen or Pencil
  • Notebooks
  • Crucible Books
  • Continuums
  • Double-Journals 

Activities and Procedures

Warm Up: Time
T: Watch morning announcements

T: Put up the slide show with the Date, Main Idea, EQs, SLOs, and Journal Prompt.

T: Tell students to get out any work they owe me.
S: Get out any work they owe me.

T: Tell students to copy down the information on the slides into their notebooks and to answer the journal prompt.
S: Silently copy the information (Date, Main Idea, EQs, SLOs) into their notebooks and answer the journal prompt.

T: Check the students’ homework for completion and as diagnostic.

Focus: Time
Engage students in reading EUs and EQs.
Reviews SLOs and reviews them with students.
Transition: Time
“Time is now up, so please pass your journals to one of the two sides, and take out your Double-Journals and Continuums.” 8:41

(What will students and teachers do/how and when?):                                                          

Activity I: Continuums Time
T: Draw the continuums up on the board. Remind students that they should have three continuums ranking the characters in terms of power, fear, and conformity.

T: Ask the students to list the characters we read about so far on the Promethean Board (they don’t have to have appeared).
S: List the characters they read about so far on the Promethean Board.

T: Call up students to write the characters’ names on the continuums and discuss why they placed the character where they did. Make sure class agrees on placement.
S: Write the characters’ names on the continuums and discuss why they placed the character where they did
S: Move characters around on board as necessary



(T connects EU/EQ to SLO): Point out students have answered the second EQ. Ask students what they can predict about the trials given the continuums on the board. Who will be a target? Who will be a persecutor? 8:50-9:00
Transition: “Pass in your continuums that you draw, and I’ll pass out the next activity.” 9:00-9:01


Activity II: Power Grid Time
T: Tell students to work in groups of three in order to create a relationship map. Each connection should not just list the relationship but how one character has power (or doesn’t) over another.
S: Create a relationship map with each connection stating the relationship and how one character has power over another.T: Lead a discussion about the “Power Grid.” How do people relate to one another? Who has power over each other? How does this relate to the witch trials and the novel ?
S: Participate in the group discussion about the “Power Grid”.
9:01 – 9:11
(T connects EU/EQ to SLO): Mention that the driving force behind accusations is power, and that affects the characters’ relationships and decisions. Ask how this relates to McCarthy? And to us? 9:11 – 9:18
Transition: “I want you to pass in your power grids and your double-journals, so we can wrap up class with what we learned today.” 9:18-9:19
Closure: Time
Teacher returns to the daily slides and reviews the main idea, EQs, and SLOs. Ask students to answer the EQs or respond to the EUs. 9:19-9:21


Independent Practice/Homework

Read pages 33 – 49 (To the end of Act I) and Double-Journal


SPLED Education Accommodations

  • Clarify when needed or to re-focus.
  • Assist with organization & study skills.
  • Verbal & Nonverbal cues to refocus attention to initiate work or when off task.
  • Positive encouragement and reinforcement for on-task behavior
  • Preferential seating near instruction to maximize on-task behavior
  • Strategies for managing anxiety & stress.
  • Chunk assignments, directions, and new instructional materials into manageable pieces. Provide specified deadlines and rubrics for each chunk.
    • Make a checklist of this breakdown with deadlines.
    • Ensure all checkpoints are reached with prompting.
    • Monitor work completion
  • Remind to re-check work for accuracy
  • Extended time for testing
  • Communication between home, school, and MH providers




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