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The Ant and the Dove
- 620-560 BCE
In this short fable, an ant and a dove protect each other from danger.Pair “The Farmer and the Viper” with “The Ant and the Dove” and ask students to discuss why the ant might return the dove’s kindness while the viper harms the farmer who helps him.
The Worst Sin
- Joshua Salik
How do we judge what is right and wrong? Are there some actions that are better or worse that others? These are just a few of the questions raised in this parable about the Jewish judgment day, Yom Kippur, by Joshua Salik.Pair “The Farmer and the Viper” with “The Worst Sin” and ask students to discuss the morality of the farmer in relation to the idea of the worst sin, indifference and inaction.
The Snake's Advice
- JonArno Lawson
In JonArno Lawson’s poem “The Snake’s Advice,” a snake gives advice to a distant ancestor of the human species.Pair “The Farmer and the Viper” with “The Snake’s Advice” to provide students with another text that uses a snake as an important character. Ask students to discuss why an author would use snakes as important characters in their stories. How does the inclusion of a snake contribute to the meaning of each text?
A Cobra in the Garden
- Mahani Zubaidy Gunnell
In Mahani Zubaidy Gunnell’s “A Cobra in the Garden,” Gunnell discusses her time living in Borneo and the cobra that lived in her garden there.Pair “The Farmer and the Viper” with “A Cobra in the Garden” and ask students to discuss how snakes are portrayed in the two texts. How does Mahani Zubaidy Gunnell’s treatment of the cobra in her garden compare to the farmer’s treatment of the snake in “The Farmer and the Viper”?