Education Resources (various grade levels)

Tatiana Ianovskaia: Down the Rabbit Hole

Alice-Themed Projects

The Many Faces of Alice
This site was created by Monica Edinger, a teacher at Dalton School in New York, to showcase the work of her fourth-grade students, who created their own illustrated version of Alice in Wonderland. The site also presents videos of the students’ toy theatre productions of an adaptation of the book which they wrote and performed (videos require Quicktime). The site also includes helpful resources for educators, such as an essay on using Alice in the classroom to work on reading comprehension and art appreciation. Several model lesson plans are provided. The “Notes” section should be used carefully—the notes are written by the students, and contain misspellings and vague definitions that the teacher or other adult reader will need to correct or clarify for students.

Turkish Writing Competition
An interesting collection of stories, poems and pictures created by students at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara, Turkey, for a school writing competition themed around Alice in Wonderland.  The winning entries present a range of student responses to the story, from humorous essays on what kind of presents could be given to the strange residents of Wonderland; to a dark re-imagining of Wonderland as disturbing place called Murderland; to a melancholy poem exploring Alice’s reflections on the end of childhood.

Teaching Aids and Courses

A Trip to Wonderland
This lesson plan, intended for students in Kindergarten to Grade 2, uses Carroll’s The Nursery “Alice” to introduce younger children to Wonderland. Skills practiced include observation, description, creative writing, drawing, and computer use. Note, however, that the lesson plan suggests using an electronic version of The Nursery “Alice” that is no longer available.

Third Grade Unit Plan
This extremely comprehensive unit plan covers everything a third-grade teacher needs to teach Alice in Wonderland, including instructions for classroom displays, discussion questions for each chapter, a script for a play, grading rubric, etc. The objective of the unit is to increase younger students’ understanding of this sometimes challenging book. The activities and assignments allow students to write responses to the book to increase reading comprehension, as well as to stage a play based on the story to incorporate drama arts in the unit.

A Study Guide for Alice—from Least Tern website
This extensive lesson plan, created for students in 6th Grade, presents many useful writing activities related to both Alice books. Teachers will find lots of suggestions on how to use the books in a Language Arts class, with daily journal writing exercises, in-class activities, and longer projects for students to complete and present to the class.

Web Scavenger Hunt
A brief scavenger hunt that encourages students to track down answers to five questions about Carroll’s personal life and background, such as where he lived, how many siblings he had, etc., by following the links provided.

Down the Rabbit Hole: Library of Congress lesson plan
This site presents a detailed lesson plan with a unique theme, using Alice in Wonderland as a tool to build students’ understanding of the immigrant experience in America. It is aimed at students in grades 6-8, and is planned as a two week unit which relates to American History, Language Arts, and English as a Second Language.

Childhood through the Looking Glass
A lesson plan for grades 6 through 8, which focuses on building skills in literary and visual art analysis, research, and critical thinking, through a comparison of themes in Alice with those in William Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience. The suggested activities and discussion questions encourage students to explore the Victorian idea of childhood, and consider how this cultural influence affected Carroll’s creation.

Comparison of Pinkwater’s Borgel to Alice
An interesting essay comparing thematic elements in Alice with those in Daniel Pinkwater’s modern children’s science-fiction/fantasy novel Borgel. This would be a useful resource for elementary school teachers interested in planning a Language Arts unit comparing/contrasting the two books.

Hidden Links to Alice Liddell in the Alice Books
This webpage presents a brief guide to some of the many allusions to Alice Liddell (the real-life inspiration for Alice), and her sisters Lorina and Edith, which Carroll hid throughout both Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. This collection of trivia will be best enjoyed by readers already familiar with the books.

Jonathan Miller’s Alice
These two interesting lesson plans (geared for “Year 7” and “Year 9” in the UK system) from the British Film Institute takes an in-depth look at Jonathan Miller’s live-action production of Alice in Wonderland (available for purchase from the BFI site). Teachers can use this outline to guide high school students through an analysis of the film to learn about movie-making techniques, cinematography, related vocabulary terms, etc.   (If you have not seen this film, be advised that the creatures of Wonderland are all portrayed as stuffy characters from English academia with hints of animal traits, and Alice’s behavior is particularly detached and dreamlike.  The film was made in the 1960’s, complete with touches of sitar music in the background!)

Discovery Channel
This site presents a detailed lesson plan outline for using Alice in Wonderland in the classroom, for grades 9 to 12. Discussion questions, vocabulary words and definitions, assignment suggestions, adaptations, and extensions are provided. The lesson plan relates Carroll’s use of absurdity to the work of Surrealist painters of the 20s and 30s; there is also a simpler adaptation for less advanced students, which uses the art of caricature as a comparison point rather than Surrealist paintings. The site is very useful for practicing interpretation and understanding of both literature and artwork

GradeSaver Study Guide
A well-written study guide for Alice in Wonderland, this site presents useful materials for students, including a brief summary; background information on the book, Lewis Carroll, and the Victorian era; a list of the major characters; a discussion of central themes; and a chapter-by-chapter analysis.

Article on Lewis Carroll from TeacherVision
This informative article discusses the history of the Alice books, their critical reception at the time of publication, as well as the response of other well-known writers to Carroll’s work, including Virginia Woolf. It also offers insights on Lewis Carroll’s personal life and background, and how his books were shaped by his own life experiences. The article is followed by a list of eleven discussion questions relating to Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.

Slides on Election System
This set of 26 slides presents a theorem regarding outcomes of elections which Carroll devised, and examines the accuracy of Carroll’s ideas. Colorful and entertaining, this slideshow will be useful for educators looking for imaginative supplemental materials for a college-level mathematics class. Note, however, that the slides are not accompanied by lecture notes; teachers will have to flesh out the slides with their own lecture.

Sparknotes Study Guide
This site presents a summary, chapter-by-chapter analysis, comprehensive list of characters, background information to help readers put the book in context with Carroll’s life and times, and more. The “Analysis of Major Characters” section, which discusses the characters of Alice, the Cheshire Cat, and the Queen of Hearts in detail, is especially interesting, as is the “Themes, Motifs, and Symbols” section.

Victorian Web Study Site
A far-reaching collection of links and study suggestions touching on Carroll’s life, world, and works.

Discussion Questions from Pikes Peak Library
This list of discussion questions encourages readers to consider many aspects and themes of the Alice books, from logic versus illogic, social hierarchies and class structure, etiquette, identity, childhood versus adulthood, and so on. This would be a useful resource for book clubs, teachers, etc.

Helpful Tools

Search Carroll Texts
A convenient reference tool, this site collects many of Carroll’s literary works and makes them fully searchable. The full texts of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass are available, along with some of Carroll’s other works such as Sylvie and Bruno and The Hunting of the Snark, as well as his poetry. It also includes a detailed biography.

School Performances

Chesterton High School’s production of Alice in Wonderland
Explore this link to find a gallery of pictures documenting an elaborate high school theatre production of Alice in Wonderland. Drama teachers or others planning a performance of the book will find inspiration in the photos of the beautiful and imaginative set designs.

Other Inspirations

Interactive Wonderland
A fun interactive site with lots of fascinating puzzles, activities, and games (most require a Java-enabled browser). Kids can click and drag on a picture of Alice to make her change sizes and shapes, write a silly fill-in-the-blanks story, draw pictures, solve word puzzles, and much more.

Crossword Puzzle
This puzzle was created using a (pardon the techno-speak) java applet.  If your computer is reasonably up-to-date, it should work, but it may not play on all computers.

STUDENTS: If you are seeking assistance with a homework assignment about Lewis Carroll, please consult our Lewis Carroll page, and our FAQs and Education pages.  You will find a host of information and resources there to point you in a helpful direction for your studies.  We are aware that there are now web sites selling pre-written papers on virtually all topics, including the works of Lewis Carroll.  We are confident that Lewis Carroll, as a lifelong scholar and teacher, would always have insisted that you think and write for yourself, and never ask someone else to think for you.  There’s no fun in that, and no learning.  We congratulate you for following his wise advice!  We hope our web site helps inspire your own writing.  If you are particularly proud of a Carroll-related essay you’ve written, we encourage you to e-mail us a copy.  We’d love to read it.