Literature Lesson Plans and Activities for “The Giver”

written by: Keren Perles • edited by: SForsyth • updated: 3/13/2010

“The Giver,” by Lois Lowry, is a unique book that can lead your students to debating several important questions about society. Use these “The Giver” lesson plans and activities to help your students relate to this classic novel.

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    What’s Your Job?

    The best lesson plans are those that require students to connect what they’ve read to their own lives. Have each student write at least five phrases that describe their strengths and weaknesses, and collect them on your desk. Read each paper aloud (without mentioning the student’s name), and ask the class to decide which job that person would do best. Then have each student write a response about how they would feel if that job were chosen for them, as well as whether they would see themselves choosing that job on their own.

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    Color Activity

    In Jonas’s world, there is no color. To help students realize what color means to them, break them into groups and give each group a piece of colored construction paper, each paper a different color. Have the group spend a few minutes writing about the associations that they have with that color. Then have them swap papers and repeat the exercise until each group has had a turn with each color. Encourage them to share their reactions with the rest of the class and to discuss how the activity has helped them understand the importance of color in “The Giver.”

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    Euthanasia is a concept that is referenced in the book, albeit in an extreme manner. Encourage students to research the concept of euthanasia on the internet and to write a paragraph discussing their views on the subject. This activity is only recommended for more mature classes, probably upper high schoolers.

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    Let’s Have a Debate

    Write the sentence “In an ideal world, everyone would be equal” on the board. In writing, have students brainstorm their reaction to that statement. Encourage them to think about the statement based on what they read about the utopian world in “The Giver.” Split them into groups based on their reactions to the statement, and have the groups debate with each other. Make sure that each student gets a turn to share his opinions with the class.

    These "The Giver" lesson plans and activities are a great way to get your students interested more deeply in the concepts in the novel. Try them out, and watch the discussions that they spark!

“The Giver” Lesson Plans, Activities, and Other Teacher Materials

Many literature teachers enjoy teaching "The Giver," by Lois Lowry, to their students. This series includes “The Giver” lesson plans, activities, and other materials that can be helpful to educators teaching this novel.
  1. Literature Lesson Plans and Activities for “The Giver”
  2. “The Giver” Activity: Agree or Disagree?