High School
English Language Arts

Magical Realism in Literature and Art

How do truth and fantasy blend in life, literature, and art? How can a study of this blend encourage critical and creative thinking? Students enjoy reading and analyzing visual and written texts associated with magical realism. It is fun and very rewarding for the teacher and student.
A Collection By Melissa Mirabello
  • 7 Collection Items
  • 7 Collection Items
  • Discussion
Magical Realism in Literature and Art
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    This is a list of text titles for magical realism. It also includes many blog posts about magical realism. A teacher could use this as a personal resource or have students work in groups to present information about a particular story.
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    Students benefit from watching and taking notes during this video. The speaker provokes viewers to look beneath the surface, the veneer of art and ask what it suggests about life or the self. This idea, of looking for literal, figurative and hidden meanings also applies to the literature connected to magical realism.
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    I like showing Paul Bond's artwork with a checklist of terms/ideas that the students have learned about magical realism. I ask the students to check off the characteristics that they see in his works. Then, I ask students to research an artist whose work can be identified as magical realism. This site briefly describes the concept of magical realism and gives many pieces for students to discuss and/or write about.
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    A teacher uploaded this stop-motion adaptation of the short story "The Very Old Man With Enormous Wings" as a sample for her students' final project on the short story. It is helpful to show students different possibilities for a project so that their creative juices are flowing.
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    Salman Rushdie's talk about the meaning of our lives, what moves us, and what stories "say" about us is a great opening day lesson for magical realism. Students know that fiction is not true, but they also know that there is a lot of fantasy in our realities and many truthful features of our fantasies. Rushdie stresses that if students can relate to the characters, human truth resounds in truth and magical realism.
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    I love all the ideas on this site because a teacher can peruse them and pick the ones that best suit his/her teaching style and students' needs. The site author includes enduring understandings and essential questions to guide the unit preparation and link the content to curriculum goals. She also lists ways to assess students' understanding such as exit cards and journaling. Finally, an organizational chart with step-by-step lesson plans is very helpful.
  • Melissa Mirabello says:
    This is a superb resource that I have modified and used for my students. The supplemental material such as the song "Do you believe in magic?" and the Harry Potter clip were a hit. If students are not exposed to magical realism in high school, they may never experience it. However, the majority of my students loved reading it and imitating it. This resource is filled with instructional strategies and student learning and assessment activities.
BloomBoard SparkOther Cross-Curricular
BloomBoard Asks:Is the line blurred between what is real and what is magical?