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Curriculum Connections for this Activity (Click Here)
To contextualize and reflect on the significance of a line in the play
To make connections between the play and personal experience
To understand the perspectives of others
To think about different kinds of families and roles within families
Remind students of the lines: “if the whole family isn’t in the boat - it starts to sink instead of float”
Ask students what they think this means, what the significance is in the play
Ask the students to form groups in different parts of the room according to their birth positions in their families (eldest, youngest, in-between/middle, only child)
Each student in each group will discuss with other members of the group:
How does it feel to be (firstborn, etc)
What are the responsibilities you have in your family?
Do you feel there are advantages or disadvantages to being the (firstborn, only child, etc)
Merge the groups so that there are two large groups instead of four. In these larger groups, ask students to discuss:
Who do you think has the most power in your family?
How do you feel toward other siblings?
Who gets attention in your family and how do they get it?
Come back as a large group and debrief:
What did you learn about birth order and power in a family?
How did you feel when you were with others in the same birth position as you?
What did you learn about others who were in a different position in their family?
How do you contribute to your family in a special way?
Relate to play:
What is Fin’s role in their family? What is Holly’s?
How do Fin and Holly get along? (examples). Why do you think this is? How might their birth order and different ages affect how they interact/ how they are in their family?
How does Fin and Holly’s family support each other? What were some times where they disagreed/didn’t get along (and how did they work through this)? How do their relationships change throughout the play?
If you were going to come up with a motto for your own family, similar to the line about the boat, what would it be and why?