Who is Father Time? Introducing Time as a Character In The Night Circus

Amanda Soesbee, English, North Mecklenburg High School

Curriculum Unit (pdf)


In 10th grade English (English II), the major focus as outlined by the state curriculum is the End of Course Test, which requires students to call upon advanced reading comprehension skills.  The test includes informational texts, poetry, and fiction, and most questions are based on literary elements.  Students have to know how to apply the literary skills they have learned, often in combination, to a variety of texts.  In the MYP (International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme, which consists of years 4 & 5, or grades 9 & 10) curriculum, we also have an important global aspect in each of our units of study.  Students are encouraged to think about how the texts, characters, themes, etc. that they study influence and are influenced by the world in which they live.  In simpler terms, we encourage the study of literature to extend beyond the classroom, cross-curricularly and globally.  In the CTI seminar “It’s About Time,” we are exploring how time is depicted through science, culture, and creative works as well as how time is connected to and moves through space.  In this curriculum unit, I will introduce to students the idea of Time being personified as a “living” character in various literary works, including the novel The Night Circus, and ask them to examine how changing Time could alter the work itself.