Documentary Guidelines

To create your documentary, you can go choose between one of two approaches.


You can either choose to create a documentary in which you (and anyone else with whom you work) are the character(s) from the realistic fiction novel.  The characters should be interviewed and discuss main ideas, events, and themes from the novel.  The characters should speak as if they are describing their own thoughts and experiences.


A second option is to create a documentary in which you (and anyone else with whom you work) are discussing the characters in the novel, their experiences, and the themes of the novel in an analytical format.  You will analyze the effectiveness of the writing, the effectiveness of the characterization, and the author’s portrayal of themes.





Voice Over

Character/Analyst Speaking to the Topic/Theme/Thesis of your novel.

Your documentary should be a mix between images that represent the novel, information provided through the speakers in the interview and information/thoughts provided by the narrator’s voice on the documentary that guide the flow of the documentary.

The documentary should be at least five minutes per student involved.  That means that if there is one student reporting on this book, then it should be at least five minutes.  If there are three students working on the book, the documentary should be at least fifteen minutes. 

The documentary should demonstrate a thematic idea that the creator (the student) is attempting to demonstrate to the viewers.

A strong knowledge of the plot, characters, setting and theme of the realistic fiction novel should be evident.

A depth and complexity of understanding of the novel’s message and theme(s) should be demonstrated throughout the documentary.

Clarity and fluidity should be evident throughout the documentary.

Quality and thoughtfulness should be exhibited in the finished piece.

Some suggestions for creating a documentary and examples of documentaries may be found at the following websites.

RI 8.5

RI 8.5: Analyze in detail the structure of a specific paragraph in a text, including the role of particular sentences in developing and refining a key concept.

Go to the website link below and use  Pericles’ Funeral Oration as a complex text for close reading and analysis.

Also, use sources like Newsela and to find up to date articles for close reading and analysis for RI 8.5 on a consistent basis.



RL 8.5 Compare/Contrast

RL 8.5: Compare and Contrast the structure of two or more texts and analyze how the differeing structure of each text contributes to its meaning and style.

Use pages 1064-1069 of the Prentice Hall Literature Textbook.  Also, review pages R24-R33 to discuss different formats of texts. 

Use this website to find articles and political cartoons about the same topic.  You can use these articles to compare and contrast nonfictional pieces. 

Amazon River Article #1

Amazon (river, Peru and Brazil).The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. 2013. 18 Mar. 2014 <>.

Amazon River Article #2



Homework March 10 – March 14

Monday – Wednesday

Complete “Lottery” Stations (one green, one blue, one pink, and one black).  Assignment guidelines are on Edmodo

Get Realistic Fiction Novel for Documentary Project (due April 7).  Have book approved by me by Friday of this week.


Get Realistic Fiction Novel for Documentary Project (due April 7).  Have book approved by me by Friday of this week.


Complete Draft 1 (Type 3) for Cultural Research Paper

Dracula, Chapter 2 Excerpt

The castle is on the very edge of a terrible precipice. A stone falling from the window would fall a thousand feet without touching anything! As far as the eye can reach is a sea of green tree tops, with occasionally a deep rift where there is a chasm. Here and there are silver threads where the rivers wind in deep gorges through the forests.

But I am not in heart to describe beauty, for when I had seen the view I explored further; doors, doors, doors everywhere, and all locked and bolted. In no place save from the windows in the castle walls is there an available exit.
The castle is a veritable prison, and I am a prisoner!