1. Open the provided worksheet. I have ordered the questions to coincide with the order of the websites to make your task easier.
2. Answer all questions and when possible include specific evidence and statistics. Also make a note of which website provided the information. This will make the information easier to site when you complete the assignment at the end of the webquest.
3. Include any reactions you have while you are researching. The short essay that you write at the end of the webquest will be based on your personal opinions regarding banned books. Your initial reactions to the information will be a valuable resource.
You will write a 2-3 page essay on the use of banned books in high school curriculum. This essay should be double spaced in MLA format including proper in text citation and works cited page (I will provide you with a guide to MLA format). In this essay you should address your personal views on freedom of speech and what types of materials are appropriate in a high school course.
Pretend that there is a PTA meeting about a controversial book being taught in this school, and a motion has been brought before the PTA to remove this book from the curriculum because it is deemed inappropriate for teens. You have decided that you want to address this issue by writing an essay to be presented to the assembled parents, teachers, and administrators. You will choose a side of this issue and defend it.
The main question you should address is: Should banned or controversial books be used in high school classes? Why or why not? Use specific evidence that you accumulated during the first half of the webquest as well as pertinent information from class discussions about Looking for Alaska and Catcher in the Rye. (You may pretend one of these books is being challenged.)
The following questions will help to guide your thinking:
Why are these books considered controversial?
Where else are teens exposed to this type of information?
Do you feel comfortable discussing these issues in a serious manner with others?
What is the appropriate time and place for exposure to these ideas?
You do not necessarily need to answer these questions in your essay. I have provided these questions to help you formulate your argument and to keep your essay focused. Always remember to keep your audience in mind! You are addessing and attempting to persuade parents and education professionals. Make sure that you use the facts that you learn to your advantage and that your language is precise, formal, and persuasive.