Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum Lesson Plan for Huckleberry Finn

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Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum

Lesson Plan for Huckleberry Finn

Created by: Serena Andrews

School: Jesup High School, Jesup Iowa

Hannibal-LaGrange University, Hannibal, MO

July 7, 2014–Mark Twain Teachers’ Workshop

Hannibal, Missouri
Born to Trouble: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Documentary Video Supplement

LESSON PLAN for Huckleberry Finn

Concept or Topic:

Born to Trouble: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn – A documentary video to supplement the reading of Huck Finn

Suggested Grade Level:



American Literature

Suggested Time Frame:

View in 3-4 segments during and after the book is read, starting after chapter 16.


  1. Students will view and listen to the documentary video and respond to accompanying questions in order to explain and describe Twain as an author and satirist which developed from his observations in life.

  2. Students will describe the time period in which Twain wrote and explain why the Post Reconstruction following the Civil War helped inspire his writing of an anti-racist novel.

  3. Students will find and write their opinion on the censorship of Huck Finn.

  4. Students will write a personal response/reflection about how a book they’ve read has changed their way of thinking. This book could be Huck Finn or another book.

Common Core Standards:

Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text, including determining where the text leaves matters uncertain.
Analyze the impact of the author's choices regarding how to develop and relate elements of a story or drama (e.g., where a story is set, how the action is ordered, how the characters are introduced and developed).
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including words with multiple meanings or language that is particularly fresh, engaging, or beautiful. (Include Shakespeare as well as other authors.)
Analyze how an author's choices concerning how to structure specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact.

Analyze a case in which grasping a point of view requires distinguishing what is directly stated in a text from what is really meant (e.g., satire, sarcasm, irony, or understatement).
Demonstrate knowledge of eighteenth-, nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century foundational works of American literature, including how two or more texts from the same period treat similar themes or topics.


At certain points in the video, the teacher will pause to allow students to write responses to each question that pertains to what was discussed or mentioned in the video.

Points awarded for each response vary based on the type of question and depth of expected response. Each point value is printed next to the question. For example, a one-point question requires one response, typically recalling a fact. A four-point question might require a response with three supporting details.
In general, types of questions include recalling, making connections, analyzing, and evaluating.

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