The Rattrap

Title: Exploring Themes and Symbolism in "The Rat Trap" by Selma Lagerlöf

Objective: Students will analyze themes and symbolism in "The Rat Trap" by Selma Lagerlöf to understand the author's message about human nature and redemption.

Materials Needed:

  • Copies of "The Rat Trap" by Selma Lagerlöf
  • Whiteboard and markers
  • Chart paper and markers
  • Post-it notes
  • Internet access for research (optional)


Introduction (15 minutes):

  1. Begin the lesson by asking students if they are familiar with the author Selma Lagerlöf and her works.
  2. Provide a brief overview of Selma Lagerlöf's background and her contributions to literature, emphasizing her exploration of human nature and social issues.
  3. Introduce the short story "The Rat Trap" and its themes, such as redemption, human kindness, and the cycle of poverty.

Reading and Analysis (30 minutes):

  1. Distribute copies of "The Rat Trap" to students and have them read the story silently or aloud in pairs.
  2. Encourage students to annotate the text as they read, noting important events, character traits, and instances of symbolism.
  3. After reading, facilitate a class discussion to analyze the story's themes and symbolism. Use guiding questions such as:
    • What is the main theme of the story? How is it conveyed through the plot and characters?
    • How does the rat trap symbolize the protagonist's outlook on life?
    • What role does kindness play in the story? How do acts of kindness impact the protagonist and other characters?
    • Discuss the significance of the ironmaster's actions toward the protagonist.
    • How does the setting contribute to the mood and themes of the story?

Group Activity: Symbolism Chart (20 minutes):

  1. Divide the class into small groups and provide each group with chart paper and markers.
  2. Instruct each group to create a symbolism chart for "The Rat Trap," listing significant symbols from the story and their meanings.
  3. Encourage students to use evidence from the text to support their interpretations.
  4. After completing the charts, have each group present their findings to the class, discussing the symbolism they identified and its significance to the story.

Wrap-Up and Reflection (15 minutes):

  1. Lead a class discussion to summarize the key themes and symbolism explored in "The Rat Trap."
  2. Ask students to reflect on the lessons they can learn from the story about human nature, kindness, and redemption.
  3. Assign a written reflection where students discuss how the themes and symbolism in "The Rat Trap" relate to their own lives or other works of literature they have read.


  • Participation in class discussions and group activities
  • Annotations on the text demonstrating understanding of themes and symbolism
  • Quality of written reflection on the story's lessons and relevance to personal experiences or other literature

This lesson plan aims to engage students in a deep analysis of "The Rat Trap" by Selma Lagerlöf, encouraging them to explore its themes and symbolism while reflecting on its broader implications for human behavior and society

Post a Comment

Spammers Keep Away !!

Previous Post Next Post