Teaching Lord of the Flies doesn’t have to be an uphill battle toward Castle Rock. Armed with a few creative ideas, you can plan an engaging unit full of meaningful and fun Lord of the Flies activities!
William Golding’s Lord of the Flies offers a fascinating perspective on human nature, the perils of unchecked authority, and the consequences of societal breakdown. By teaching Lord of the Flies, you can help your students to delve into these dark themes while also providing them with hope and a better understanding of what it means to leave a positive impact on society.
Are you ready to discover how to better engage your readers with these Lord of the Flies themes? Let’s explore!
Pre-reading activities for Lord of the Flies
Introducing Lord of the Flies is probably one of my favorite ways to start a unit EVER! You can get visuals and read all about hooking students here, but in short, students do a mock survival challenge. They have 30 seconds to grab 3 belongings and form survivor groups. This introduction activity is fun and chaotic in the best way possible and goes far in sparking curiosity for the unit!
To keep the momentum going, students revisit these groups throughout the novel study to have “fireside chats” about the book and do fun challenges such as “pin the tail on the pig,” island trivia, and review games. At the end of the unit, only one winning group will be named royalty of Castle Rock. 😉 You can find all of the introduction resources and game challenges here: Lord of the Flies Complete Unit Plan
Lord of the Flies Chapter Activities
It’s essential to keep students engaged while teaching Lord of the Flies. Here are some meaningful and fun Lord of the Flies activities that will do just that!
Lord of the Flies chapter 1 Activities:
The best hands-on way to teach the concept of a microcosm! This Lord of the Flies activity is active and engaging, and immerses students in the world of the novel right away. A mix of art and creativity as well as deeper thinking about the symbols in the novel will spark insightful discussions about Golding’s purpose and message regarding the human condition. This activity will become even more meaningful later on as each symbol gains power and represents something essential to the boys. Want to see this in action? Check out this Instagram post!
Lord of the Flies chapter 2 Activities:
After being introduced to the main characters in chapter 2, have students analyze each character’s personality and chart where they may fall on an Enneagram evaluation scale. This activity makes the reading relevant and personal for students as they may begin thinking about ways they relate to each of the characters or even how they might behave on the island if they were in the boys’ shoes!
Lord of the Flies chapter 3 Activities:
Nothing brings Lord of the Flies to life quite like a real-life simulation! My students and I had so much fun using this Survival Shelter Procedural Writing activity with Lord of the Flies, and I hope that you have the same experience! To incorporate a little STEM in ELA, students can practice building real-life shelters with sticks, leaves, and twigs, and then work on writing out their process for others to follow. This realistic activity can help students better understand the challenges and conflict of the characters. The best part? It is also versatile and can be used with a range of books and stories that involve needing to build a shelter in the wilderness.
Lord of the Flies chapter 4 Activities:
Chapter 4 of Lord of the Flies is a great place to discuss masks – both physical and metaphorical. This Awesome Stranger Mask Text Set pushes students to think critically about direct and indirect characterization of Jack, and how he has developed during his time on the island. Pair the description of Jack’s mask with an article on the tradition of masks or Paul Laurence Dunbar’s poem “We Wear the Mask” to really drive home to deeper meaning behind Jack’s disguise. As with other activities in the Lord of the Flies Unit, this text set draws connections to Golding’s larger purpose of commenting on society and the human condition.
Lord of the Flies chapter 5 Activities:
As the main conflict continues to develop, students can chart their thinking while reading chapter 5 of Lord of the Flies in this Cause and Effect Chart. This activity guides students through the process of understanding Ralph’s complaints at the assembly of how and why their society is breaking down. This activity pairs naturally with the Who is to Blame Critical Thinking Analysis, allowing students to evaluate who is most at fault for the way things have gone awry on the island. Students will love placing blame, and they will think deeply and critically about conflict along the way!
Lord of the Flies chapter 6 Activities:
Using their Build a Beast activity, have students read the first description of the beast. They will individually visualize what the beastie looks like by focusing on Sam and Eric’s description. The image they create will become clear later on as they better understand the symbolism of the beast and its meaning in the book. Take this activity a step further with the Monster Psychology Connection, and students will make connections between Lord of the Flies to themselves, other texts, and the world at large.
Lord of the Flies chapter 7 Activities:
If you’re looking for another engaging activity to pair when teaching Lord of the Flies, try this Song Pairing Activity that has students hunt for and analyze figurative language in a popular U2 song named after a chapter in the book. As students find examples in the song lyrics, they draw connections to the text. This activity pushes students to apply their skills apart from Lord of the Flies, allowing them to show evidence of their abilities beyond the class novel.
Lord of the Flies chapter 8 Activities:
When teaching Lord of the Flies, students can easily get caught up in the survival story and adventure of it all, forgetting Golding’s message about society and conflict. This TED Talk Pairing first allows students to practice rhetorical analysis, and then makes connections to students’ own ability to deal with conflict.
Lord of the Flies chapter 9 Activities:
Chapter 9 is so sad. Let’s make it even more depressing, shall we? The first step is to have a digital candle burning for the memorial when students walk in. Next, make it a little more melancholy by adding some sad instrumental music playing in the background. Then, after finishing the chapter, really set the dark mood off by having students Plan a Memorial. Consider having students pay their respects to the character in Lord of the Flies by doing the prompt in the Memorial Plan Creation activity. You could bring it all home by having students read their memorial plans aloud to honor the death of a character.
Lord of the Flies chapter 10 Activities:
Everyone loves a good debate. And nothing sparks more debate in Lord of the Flies than the question: Which is more important, the conch or the glasses? In the This or That activity, students not only debate the importance of each of these objects, but they do so by assuming the role of a character in the novel. By choosing a perspective, students think even more critically about character motivation and the symbolism of these objects. Take this debate a step further by having students write an argumentative claim with a counterclaim and rebuttal. You could even host an official class debate to argue both sides!
Lord of the Flies chapter 11 Activities:
The scene at Castle Rock is one of the saddest and most significant moments in Lord of the Flies. This Castle Rock Close Reading activity guides students through identifying moments of foreshadowing and animal connotations, and allows them to make inferences about the actions in this chapter. A close read offers students a moment to zoom in on a particular passage and analyze its importance in the text as a whole. Additionally, prompts in this activity draw connections to the real world, giving students a “bigger picture” view of the ending of this novel.
Post Reading Activities for Lord of the Flies
After finishing Lord of the Flies, it’s important to unpack the ending. Here are some ideas:
- Host a Socratic Seminar and allow students to discuss what just happened and how it impacts the theme.
- Have students read a more hopeful article about a real life Lord of the Flies situation and discuss the differences.
- Have students complete their microcosm by reflecting on what each symbol represents.
I hope this post has inspired you while planning your Lord of the Flies unit. As you can tell, teaching Lord of the Flies can help students develop a range of important skills, including critical thinking, analysis, empathy, and ethical decision-making. If you want your Lord of the Flies unit done for you, download all of these Lord of the Flies activities here!
From Steven King to Suzanne Collins, Lord of the Flies has inspired readers through the ages to explore the ugliness of human nature within the safe pages of a book. In turn, readers use these lessons and insight to better understand and contribute to a better world. With this Lord of the Flies unit plan, your students will do the same.
Want a free parting gift? Grab a Lord of the Flies Bookish BINGO board!