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The Red Pony Lesson Plan
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Teachers and educators: Get the most from your time in the classroom when you use this lesson plan for John Steinbeck's The Red Pony, timeless coming-of-age novel. This lesson plan will help you convey to your students the motivations behind Steinbeck's characters as well as offering assistance with the novel's themes, including aging and death. Examples of guided discussion and study questions from this lesson plan include the following:
- Identify Billy Buck, Carl Tiflin, Jody Tiflin in The Red Pony. Billy Buck is the ranch hand. Carl Tiflin owns the ranch and is Jody's father. Jody is the main character, a young boy growing up on a ranch.
- How did Mr. Tiflin react to Jody when he found him with the pony and buzzard? How did Billy react? Carl Tiflin was not particularly understanding. He only dealt with the obvious fact that the buzzard didn't kill the pony. He missed the point. Billy was concerned with Jody's feelings and had picked him up to take him home.
- "And he [Billy] walked away from Jody and went into the saddle-room beside the barn, for his feelings were hurt." Why were his feelings hurt? Billy's feelings were hurt because he knew that Jody didn't admire him as much as he had before the red pony died. He knew he had been infallible before that, and now he was capable of failure.
- "He tried to be glad because of the colt, but the bloody face, and the haunted, tired eyes of Billy Buck hung in the air ahead of him." What do we learn about Jody from this passage? Jody is starting to think about someone other than himself. Getting the colt is important to him, but now Billy's feelings are important, too.
- What's Mr. Tiflin's attitude towards Grandfather? Jody's? Billy's? Mr. Tiflin is cold towards the grandfather. He doesn't want him there and doesn't even try to be polite. Billy doesn't particularly like the old man's company, but he at least tries to be polite. Jody likes the old man's stories and is really glad to have him there.
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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 Pony by John Steinbeck.