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Is this sentence in the lesson plan correct?There is a sentence in The Adventures of...

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jjhansen | High School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 16, 2012 at 4:40 PM via web

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Is this sentence in the lesson plan correct?

There is a sentence in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer A Unit Plan Second Edition on page 21 that reads, "Tom and Huck went to the dead limb tree at midnight as they thought the best time to dig for treasure was where the shadow of the dead limb falls at midnight."

This was used as a True/False question for a class quiz where everyone answered true except one student who said it was false. The parents of this one student got involved and complained that the sentence is wrong because it should say "..the best PLACE to dig.." and they were awarded the marks. Is the sentence correct as intended for use in the lesson plan?

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mrs-f | High School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 16, 2012 at 4:57 PM (Answer #1)

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In this case, I think it can easily be argued either way.  There is such a thing as a bad test question.  At first I wanted to say that this definitely should say time.  This is because while in today's world, we think of time as a construct unrelated to shadows and light, in the time of Huck, there was a lot more emphasis placed on physical indicators such as where the sun was in the sky.  At the same time, they are going to the dead limb tree to dig.  That's a place.    

When it comes to questions that are so close as to go either way, I fall back on one of my core values in teaching--seeing things from multiple perspectives.  If a student comes to me and a strong point can be made for how they see something, I award the point.  What I really don't like about your situation is that the parents got involved.  How are you rewarding student thinking when the parents are the ones arguing the point? 

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