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The Red Badge of Courage Lesson Plan

The Red Badge of Courage Lesson Plan

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By using this lesson plan, teachers and educators will be able to guide their students through Stephen Crane's classic coming-of-age novel, The Red Badge of Courage. This lesson plan offers assistance in conveying the motives off the novel's characters as well as guidance in explaining to your classes Crane's central themes, including alienation, loneliness, and the role of naturalism. Examples of guided discussion and study questions from this lesson plan include the following:

  • What was the reaction of each (the tall soldier, youthful private, and loud soldier) to the news? The tall soldier was apparently glad to be bringing the news. The youthful private watched and listened to the other men and then went into his hut to think about what he had heard. The loud soldier argued with the tall soldier, saying the regiment would not move.
  • What did the loud soldier give the young soldier at the end of Chapter 3? What do we learn about the loud soldier in that scene? The loud soldier gave the young soldier some personal things to take to his family since he thought he might be killed in the upcoming battle. We learn that the loud soldier recognizes he is not invincible, that he probably is very concerned about being in the war.
  • Why did the youth feel wronged? Henry felt wronged because he ran when he thought everyone else was running from battle. In fact, most of the regiment must have remained to fight, and they won the battle. He felt tricked into running and is therefore bitter about the victory since he was not a part of it.
  • The main conflict of this chapter is Henry vs. Himself. Explain. We spend almost the whole chapter reading Henry's thoughts as he goes through scene after scene of possible scenarios regarding his current dilemma. He has thought about his problem so much, he is really beginning to be his own worst enemy, so to speak. There is a tremendous conflict within Henry.
  • "He was a man." Why? How is "man" defined in The Red Badge of Courage? Henry had faced death and by facing it had learned how to lead a better life. "He felt a quiet manhood, nonassertive but of sturdy and strong blood. He knew that he would no more quail before his guides wherever they would point."

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Written by educators for educators. The most content-rich literature lesson plans anywhere. Guaranteed.

eNotes is pleased to offer Teacher's Pet Publication LitPlans, the most complete literature lesson plans available to teachers and educators everywhere. Since 1989, these lesson plans have undergone extensive development based on the experience and feedback of teachers all over the world. We have more than 115 lesson plans available for download on the most widely-read books and plays, including this lesson plan for The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane. 

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