The Other Side of Truth – Planning Overview

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Are you seeking an engaging novel study to help your students dive deeper into literature? The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo is a captivating story that explores several themes and provides rich material for classroom discussions.

Not only can this book help deepen students’ knowledge about international issues related to migration, but it also encourages them to develop analytical skills that are applicable beyond the classroom.

To maximize the learning objectives associated with The Other Side of Truth, here is an overview of how to incorporate activities and assignments that will engage your learners in meaningful ways.

Related: For more, check out our article on The Secret World Of Polly Flint  here.

The Storyline of The Other Side of Truth

The Other Side of Truth is a book by Beverley Naidoo set in Nigeria and London. The story follows two children, Sade and Femi, who have been sent away from their home in Lagos after their father, an outspoken journalist, is shot dead.

With the help of some friends they encounter on their journey, they make it to London, where they have to face many challenges to find safety and stability.

Along the way, they learn more about themselves and the power of truth and freedom. They eventually tell their story and reunite with family members in England.

The Themes in The Other Side of Truth

Truth and Freedom

Truth and freedom are the main themes of The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo. Sade and Femi’s father was a journalist who stood for truth, eventually leading to his death.

Through their journey, the children learn that speaking the truth can be dangerous and liberating. They understand the power of true stories and how they can be used to fight against oppression.

Power of Family

Family plays a large part in The Other Side of Truth. When Sade and Femi set out independently, they face many challenges they could not have imagined. However, they can find strength in each other and those around them.

Even though long distances separate their family, they draw comfort from knowing that those close to them love them no matter what happens.

Immigration and War

The effects of war and immigration are explored heavily in The Other Side of Truth. Sade and Femi are forced from their home because of war and violence, only to face even greater danger when they arrive in London. This story highlights immigrants’ struggles to make a new life far from home.

Characters

The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo features several key characters that come together to form the story.

Sade

Sade is one of the main characters in the book. She is a brave and intelligent girl who has been forced to flee her home in Lagos after her father’s death.

She struggles to adjust to life in London but ultimately finds strength in herself and those around her. Her courage eventually leads her and Femi to find safety and stability in their new home.

Femi

Femi is Sade’s younger brother, who relies on his sister for support throughout much of the story. His intelligence and inquisitive mind helps him develop an understanding of the dangers that come with speaking out against injustice.

He also finds strength in family and friends, which ultimately help them through their most difficult times.

Auntie Ifeoma

Auntie Ifeoma is Sade and Femi’s aunt who takes them in when they first arrive in London. She provides them shelter and food, but more importantly, she gives them a sense of community amongst a group of Nigerian immigrants living in London.

Her kindness towards them exemplifies how family can provide strength even when you are far away from home.

Teaching Opportunities

The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo provides many opportunities to teach important lessons to readers.

Truth and Freedom

The story of Sade and Femi highlights the importance of standing up for the truth, even when it is dangerous. This important lesson can be applied in various contexts, from speaking up against injustice to simply standing up for what one believes in.

Power of Family

The power of family, especially during difficult times, is a crucial lesson illustrated in The Other Side of Truth. It shows how family can provide comfort and security even when separated by long distances.

Immigration and War

The effects of immigration and war can be hard to understand for those who have not experienced them firsthand. However, this story provides a powerful illustration that helps make these concepts more tangible. It also helps show how courage and resilience can help carry people through difficult circumstances.

Lesson Plans

Lesson Plan 1: Truth and Freedom

Objective

Students will understand the importance of standing up for the truth, even when it is dangerous.

Introduction

Start by introducing students to Sade and Femi’s story in The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo, focusing on their journey from Lagos to London. Ask students questions about why Sade and Femi had to flee their home and what challenges they faced upon arriving in London.

Main Teaching Points

Discuss the importance of speaking out against injustice, no matter how dangerous it may be. Talk about what might have happened if Sade and Femi had not stood for the truth. Talk about how freedom of expression is essential for democracy to thrive.

Reflection

Invite students to reflect on a time when they stood for something they believed in despite obstacles or dangers. Ask them what gave them courage and strength during that time.

Key Questions

  • Why did Sade and Femi need to flee Lagos?
  • What are some of the dangers of speaking out against injustice?
  • How can freedom of expression help democracy thrive?

Lesson Plan 2: Power Of Family

Objective

Students will understand the power that family provides, especially during difficult times.

Introduction

Start by introducing students to Auntie Ifeoma’s role in Sade and Femi’s story in The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo. Ask students why Auntie Ifeoma was crucial to Sade and Femi’s journey from Lagos to London.

Main Teaching Points

Discuss the power of belonging to a family, even when separated by long distances. Talk about how family can provide comfort, security, and hope even during difficult times like war or immigration.

Discuss specific examples from The Other Side Of Truth where Auntie Ifeoma supported Sade and Femi when they needed it most.

Reflection

Invite students to reflect on when their family provided comfort or strength during difficult times. Ask them which family members were most helpful during this time.

Key Questions

  • Why was Auntie Ifeoma so important for Sade and Femi’s journey? -How does belonging to a family provide comfort, security, and hope during challenging times?
  • What are some examples of your family supporting you during challenging times?

Website Resources

TES: KS3 English – The Other Side of Truth  is a teaching resource with detailed lesson plans, activities and worksheets to help teachers discuss the book with their students.

Teachit: Activity Pack 0 provides a comprehensive guide for teaching the book, including topics such as refugees and censorship, along with activities and questions for students to reflect on.

Pearson Schools and Further Education Colleges: Take A Peek provides an extensive overview of the book, including plot summaries, discussion points and exercises for students to complete after reading it.

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