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    Eduu551 powerpoint1 Eduu551 powerpoint1 Presentation Transcript

    • The Crucible and the Salem Witch Trials 10th Grade Language Arts
    • Now that we’ve read, The Crucible , use your journal to ask yourself:
      • Is there any issue, concern, or debate that you felt so strongly about that you asked yourself, “how can I do something to help or change it?”
      • Has anyone ever accused you (or someone you know) of wrongdoing, even though you knew you were innocent?
      • How did it make you feel?
      • How did you correct their error, or did you even try?
      • The accusation does not have to be a serious offence, it can be as small as someone asking, “Did you tell Sally that you thought my dress was ugly?”
    • In this lesson: We are going to examine the Power words can have. We are going to choose a side, explaining why we are For or Against the Salem Witch Trials, and write a letter to Sir William Phips, governor of Massachusetts in 1692. Governor Phips Governor Phips
    • Let’s Talk about Thomas Brattle
      • One of the most notable criticizers of the Salem Witch Trials
      • In 1692, Brattle wrote his now famous letter (dated October 8th) to an English clergyman
      • The letter showed his great disapproval of the trials
      • In it, he questioned the legality of using “spectral evidence” to find a person guilty.
      • He criticized the courts for the ways in which the accusations, arrests, trials, and executions were carried out.
      • The letter became widely circulated and read by many persons, including Governor Sir William Phips.
      • Words can have Power and Influence:
        • Brattle ends his letter with a statement that shows his understanding of how these trials will shape the image of American History:
      “ I am afraid that ages will not wear off that reproach and those stains which these things will leave behind them upon our land.”
      • The letter, along with other publications of the time, had a great influence on the governor.
        • Who are Increase and Cotton Mather?
      • Shortly after Brattle’s letter was written, Governor Phips ordered that the courts could no longer allow the use of spectral and intangible evidence.
      • Later in the month, the governor dissolved the court entirely.
      • Over 6 months later, the newly created Superior Court of Massachusetts took over the remaining witchcraft cases where no persons tried were found guilty.
    • Now, it’s your turn
      • For this assignment, you will:
          • Learn vocabulary terms
          • Read a summarized version of Thomas Brattle’s famous letter and two more (modern) versions of persuasive writing
          • Compose your own letter to Governor Phips, using persuasive writing to either praise him and the Salem Witch Trials or criticize them and urge him to stop the trials
      • We will break into groups to complete the vocabulary guide and then use the links I provide to gather information needed to compose your letter
          • Thomas Brattle:
          • Increase Mather:
          • Salem Witch Trials Memorial:
          • A possible explanation for the girls behavior. Food poisoning?:
          • Ergot?:
    • Lesson Objective
      • Students will be able to write a letter using a persuasive argument that demonstrates their understanding of the effects word choices can have on a reader.
      • California Content Standards
      • 10th Grade Language Arts
      • Main Focus:
      • Writing Applications 2.4:
        • Write persuasive compositions:
          • a. Structure ideas and arguments in a sustained and logical fashion.
          • b. Use specific rhetorical devices to support assertions (e.g., appeal to logic through reasoning; appeal to emotion or ethical belief; relate a personal anecdote, case study, or analogy).
          • c. Clarify and defend positions with precise and relevant evidence, including facts, expert opinions, quotations, and expressions of commonly accepted beliefs and logical reasoning.
          • d. Address readers’ concerns, counterclaims, biases, and expectations.
      • Other Standards that will be met
      • Reading 1.2
      • Reading Comprehension: 2.2, 2.3
      • Writing Strategies: 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6
    • References:
      • All images retrieved from, and =
      • Lesson Plan: The Crucible by Arthur Miller (author unknown). Retrieved from,
      • “ Letter of Thomas Brattle, F. R. S., 1692” retrieved from,
      • Salem Witch Trials: Documentary Archive and Transcription Project. (2002). Retrieved from,
      • Salem Witch Trials: The Stones, A Memorial, Chronology. Retrieved from,
      • Thomas Brattle. (n. d.) In Wikipedia online. Retrieved from,