Adapting the Text
Get creative with these activities. Students bring the novel to life with their own creative adaptations of scenes and characters. This selection includes low tech art and performance activities as well as high tech web productions.
Of Mice and Men has a natural dramatic structure and is perfect for an adaptation to the stage (after all, Steinbeck himself wrote a successful version for the stage). In this activity, students will choose scenes from the novel to adapt into a short, dramatic reproduction.
This is a fun activity, especially for those students who are not yet proficient in writing. Students can graphically "speak" about Of Mice and Men by creating brochures, posters, and other illustrations about the novel.
Eulogies are powerful, and should be taken seriously, even though they may contain some elements of humor. This exercise can provide students with empathy, sympathy, and a greater understanding, during any point in the novel, of the characters and situations surrounding death.
In this activity, students create radio play adaptations of scenes from Of Mice and Men. This activity can be done simply as live, unseen performances (behind a room divider or curtain). Or, for teachers with access to some basic recording equipment, the radio plays can be recorded, edited, and turned into a podcast.
This activity works well for many books, but it especially lends itself to Of Mice and Men because there are so many "alleged" crimes committed during the course of the novel. The classroom will be converted into a courtroom (as elaborate or simple as time permits). Students will begin to understand the legal system and its implications.
This is a fun and creative activity during any time of the year, but teachers can apply this specifically to Of Mice and Men. Through spontaneous poetry, students will learn more about Of Mice and Men.