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The Call of the Wild

National Endowment for the Arts: The Big Read/Erika Koss

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This resource was reviewed by OSPI in Spring 2015. Learn more about the review process and the data analysis approach.

Background from OER Project Review Team
The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. They support organizations across the country in developing community-wide programs which encourage reading and participation by diverse audiences. Resources include reader, teacher, and audio guides. Though the program supports organizations developing community-wide reading programs with associated events, the digital materials are available to all in pdf format which may be printed. This unit was designed to meet NCTE (National Council of Teachers of English) standards and predates the Common Core State Standards. This should factor into the viewer's analysis of the review results.

EQuIP (Learn more)

Revision needed (4.5)
Chart with scale of 'meets criteria' from 0 (None) to 3 (All). Alignment: 1.75, Key Shifts in the CCSS: 1.5, Instructional Supports: 1.0, Assessment: 0.25.

Achieve OER (Learn more)

Chart with scale from 0 (Weak) to 3 (Superior). Explanation: 1.25, Interactivity: , Exercises: 0.75, Deeper Learning: 1.25.

See standard error chart for the review scoring

Reviewer Comments (Learn more)

Moderate (2.75)

Comments/Ideal Use:

This unit would work well if teachers collaborated to scaffold activities. High interest text with engaging activities that are rigorous and encourage critical thinking. Teacher would need to be somewhat experienced.


  • Vocabulary Lessons should be taught throughout the lessons - Tier 2 and Tier 3 vocabulary words are embedded throughout the unit--- The 3 pieces of informational text that are provided should be front loaded before the reading
  • Lesson 1: Discussion Activities---give students a purpose for the note taking and what students should be listening for
  • Lesson 5: Homework---this task is a little ambiguous and doesn't provide any scaffolding for a difficult task


  • Provide common definitions for the teacher/students - protagonist, antagonist, metaphor, point of view, defiance, naturalism, admonishes
  • Add discussion questions at the end of the texts
  • State a purpose for taking notes
  • Lesson 6 after students have received instruction around writing style

Comments/Ideal Use:

This resource does include many opportunities for discussion. It is well organized and easy to follow and understand. If a teacher were required to use "Call of the Wild," this resource would be a good starting point. The resource includes a balance of lengths of writing, providing shorter and longer writing activities. Also includes different text types and research. Resource includes activities and discussion around higher order thinking (evaluating, synthesizing, analyzing, and creating). While this resource is based on a fictional novel, it also includes a non-fiction text and a timeline.


  • Not well-aligned to CCSS - aligned with other standards, lacks the depth of CCSS
  • Lacking assessment info
  • Lacking support and extensions - resource does not address tailoring activities to struggling or accelerated learners.


  • Look for opportunities to build on current materials to achieve CCSS depth and rigor.
  • Include a variety of CCSS-algined assessments with rubrics and anchors throughout the resource. Additional info on how to use the assessments to drive instruction through the unit would also be desired.
  • Differentiate content, process, and/or product in each activity for students of different abilities.

Comments/Ideal Use:

The resource includes some highly insightful potentially valuable moments of analysis. Some questions could be useful, embedded in a reader's workshop scenario.


  • Little instructional support for comprehension, literary analysis skills, writing
  • No rubrics for writing tasks or written responses to literature


  • Provide details for teachers to explain how to teach these skills and provide for support throughout learning
  • Provide detailed rubrics for each writing task, along with suggestions for formative assessment throughout learning

Comments/Ideal Use:

Teacher needs to be experienced with this story. Uses a good novel.


  • Limited alignment with CCSS

Creative Commons License
This work by the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.