Marjan the Magnificent
Objective: Students will be able to explain in writing how war can affect our animal friends. Using Marjan's name as an acrostic poem they will be able to share the effects of war on animals.
Into: How do wars start? Read the Sneetches by Dr. Suess. Students will do a "quick write" (a short paragraph) on what the problem in the story was. (The Star Belly Sneetches and the Plain Belly Sneetches both thought the were better than the other.)
How do wars escalate? Read The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Suess. Students will draw a story map that shows how the weapons kept getting bigger and more out of control. The Zooks and the Yooks could not agree about the best way to eat bread and butter ... butter side up or butter side down.
Through: How do wars effect other things than grown people? Read The Cherry Tree by Dauisaka Ikeda.
Students will keep a list of animals as the story is read that shows how war had effected them and how the cherry tree helped the village and the animals heal from the war. Introduce Marjan's memorial. Make copies of the epitaph and memories of the lion. Talk about what the reporter said about him.
Why do you think that lion was important enough to be given such tributes? Who helped him? Why did they help him?
How would you help Marjan of other animal that was a victim of war?
What could we do as a class to help an animal from New York or Washington?
As a tribute to Marjan students will write an acrostic poem using his name. For each letter or phrase, think of a word that might be used to tell Marjan's story. Post the poems on Rainbow Bridge.
Beyond: Go to Rainbow Bridge and find a new resident. Make an acrostic poem for that fur baby and send it e-mail to the people parents.
In case acrostic poetry is a form you aren't familiar with, here is a sample of how it works (not a good one I'm afraid :-):
Magnificent, mighty warrior, removed from his home far away.
Just awaiting a crowd to visit him that day.
All that hurt and sadness he beared from a war he did not create.
Now he is healed, safe and warm with his Quanni, forever.
References of animals that can be used for the curriculum: