A child Called “It”



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A Child Called “It”




Child Development – Familial Abuse

6th Grade
















Overview


In the class period, students will read excerpts from Dave Pelzer’s A Child Called “It” and discuss these passages. Through the discussion and some guidance, students will gain a better understanding of the harmful effects of abuse.

Objectives


Students will be able to:

  • Recognize the warning signs of familial abuse.

  • Reflect on how their actions affect others.

  • Discuss the consequences of abuse.

Activities


The general agenda for the day shall be:

  1. Giving a general overview/background of the story for the students.

  • Dave is a little boy who is abused brutally by his mother. His mother, Catherine, wasn’t always abusive. The Pelzer family used to be like any other average family that spent time with each other and enjoyed having fun. Dave’s parents then became alcoholics and the abuse began. Dave was physically abused, verbally abused, and neglected by his mother. His mother fed him lies on what to say when they went to the doctor for his wounds and what to say when his teachers asked about what happened to him. Since Dave didn’t want to be abused he followed his mothers lies and told them to everyone who asked. Finally, the school nurse had enough and reported the abuse to the police. Dave was finally set free and never had to see his abusive mother again.

  1. Assigning students to read pages 29-36, 47-53, 85-87, and 135-141.

  2. Have students write reflections over what they just read, and how they imagine Dave must have felt through his tragedy.

  3. Spend rest of time having a class discussion where students can talk to their peers about their feelings on the subject matter, ways to stop abuse, and how to recognize the warning signs of child abuse.

(Discussion Questions on the right side).

  1. Watch the follow videos on Youtube:

Dave Pelzers interview with Oprah:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ywsJo5OeYas

Or watch the story of Genie who was also suffered through severe familial abuse:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmdycJQi4QA


Evaluation


Students will be evaluated on their gained knowledge by asking students specific questions on their reflections. Their written reflections will also be turned in for a grade.



Materials


Materials needed for this class period will include:

  • The memoir “A Child Called ‘It’” by Dave Pelzer

  • Paper

  • Pencils/pens

Discussion Questions


  1. Who is abusing Dave?

His mother

  1. What types of abuse does Dave experience?

Physical, Verbal, and Neglect

  1. Why does Dave lie about being abused by his mother?

He doesn’t want to be abused further as a punishment

  1. Who calls the police and reports that Dave is being abused?

The school nurse

  1. Do you believe that the school should have reported Dave’s abuse sooner?

*Students personal opinions

  1. What addiction did Dave’s parents have?

Alcoholism

  1. What would you do if you were Dave’s brothers watching this occur?

*Students personal opinions







A Child Called “It”


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