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Another controlled assessment question - Macbeth

Discussion in 'English' started by Danniellaf, Oct 13, 2010.

  1. Hi all,
    Planning for the first one and a tad confused on the task title.
    Doing Macbeth and the task suggested by the centre is 'Examine family relationships.'
    Does anyone know if I actually have to stick to that title or if I can bend it a bit to, 'Examine relationships in Macbeth'?

    Any suggestions appreciated,
  2. Asta9

    Asta9 New commenter

    Obviously you'll apply the title to the play you are doing, so it will be family relationships in Macbeth, won't it?
  3. gruoch

    gruoch Occasional commenter

    The tasks are generic. As long as you keep to the basic concept you can tweak it how you like, but I think your suggestion is too vague. I've written a task on the importance of the MacDuffs.
  4. laticsbird

    laticsbird New commenter

    I'm doing Macbeth too but with two different classes and two different titles. I'm glad you've responded gruoch. I was going to ask for your advice (yet again!!)[​IMG]
    With the lower ability set, I was going to give them the title along the lines of, 'Explore Macbeth's changing character throughout the whole of the play.'
    With my other class, still quite weak but a little brighter, I was going to set the title, 'Explore the choices that the major characters in 'Macbeth' and 'Animal Farm' make and the consequences of those choices.'
    Do you think these sound ok? I've checked them against the material in our AQA packs and they seem to fit the criteria etc. But, would like another opinion. The first set are studying Macbeth only. The second are studying Macbeth and Animal Farm.

  5. gruoch

    gruoch Occasional commenter

    The advice from AQA is 'less is more', so the idea is to look at a specific scene/scenes and extrapolate from that.
    For character, low ability I'm looking at Lady M - along the lines of is her death inevitable/her own fault? As I'm only doing English the tasks are not quite the same.
    Choices - I'd be concentrating on central characters, so Macbeth and maybe Napoleon.
    I think the CAs need a very tight focus.
  6. laticsbird

    laticsbird New commenter

    Yes, with the first lot who are only doing the play, I had also thought of just picking on one or two particular scenes with probably a few references to other parts of the play to show the changes that he goes through.
    With the other set (comparison/choices) I am going to be focusing on Macbeth and Napoleon.
    Thanks for your comments. We're all so undecided in our Dept. at the moment. I think we're just taking tiny tentative steps throughout the whole CA thing. Everyone seems so confused still. And, we've just moderated our first piece! It's going to take a while to get used to the new grading system - for us at least! Or is it only us?? haha
  7. That sounds much more focused and from the material, it seems quite acceptable to narrow it down even further. For example, We're going to do macbeth and choices but the question will only be looking at his choice to murder Duncan so that we can focus on a few speeches in the early acts. Students will refer to other parts of the play when discussing the consequences of this choice. We're going to do the same with the linked text too.
  8. Thanks for all your suggestions! Everyone just seems so confused at the moment. However, I am sure the more we do it, the better we'll be!

    I think I am going to go along the lines of how Lady M's relationship with
    her husband affects his relationships/actions towards the other characters in the play. That way we can focus on key scenes like Act 1 sce 7 and Act 2 sce 1 where we witness Lady M persuade M to kill Duncan and then the dramatic irony where he meets Banquo.

    Good luck everyone and thanks again x
  9. There's one one "family relationship" in Macbeth of any importance, which is the relationship between Macbeth and his wife. Whilst it's certainly worth writing about, it's not exactly a stimulating and original question.
    Broadening to 'relationships" is in effect changing the question to "write about the play". Almost all serious literature is mainly about the relationships between the characters.

  10. regentsreject

    regentsreject Occasional commenter

    Of course you can tweak and contextualise the task but you must stick to the generic title which in this case is "Family relationships" so other relationships would not be appropriate. Whatever you decide to do, it's really important that you word the question so that the students are forced to write about the writer, as this is one of the main assessment objectives. So a question which reads "How does Shakespeare show the relationship between Macbeth and his wife" rather than "How does the relationship develop" is much better. Good practice to focus on a couple of key scenes rather than trying to deal with the whole text and feel free to add 2 or 3 bullet points to guide weaker students, in the way that the exam papers are differentiated.
  11. Thank you for that comment, it was very useful.

  12. jadejeffery

    jadejeffery New commenter

    I am an nqt and taking over two year 11 classes, both of whom are resitting their controlled assessments. We are doing the Macbeth cat in the literature and comparing alongside three poems from the ELH. Like you we are doing choices. How have you worded your question and is it ok to just focus on the one choice and then the consequences? Sorry everything seems blurry to me at the moment!

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