David Copperfield is a novel written by Charles Dickens. It is currently published by Modern Liberty. Books like David Copperfield are an integral part of language arts curriculum. This story follows a young boy by the name of David Copperfield as he faces many hardships growing up and entering adulthood.
The story begins with David Copperfield’s father already being deceased, and his mother remarrying a man named Mr. Murdstone. Mr. Murdstone sends David away to a boarding school, and when David Copperfield returns home, it isn’t long before his mother and newborn baby brother pass away.
David Copperfield’s summary continues when David is put to work in a factory that has hazardous working conditions. After David’s landlord declares bankruptcy and enters prison, David runs away to live with his great Aunt Betsy Trotwood, who affectionately nicknames him "Trotwood Copperfield."
This book is important because it teaches children about social injustices, and how one can rise above poverty. In the end of the novel David Copperfield, David becomes a successful writer.
This David Copperfield passage reveals David’s philosophy on life. "Whatever I have tried to do in life, I have tried with all my heart to do well; that whatever I have devoted myself to, I have devoted myself to completely…in great aims and in small, I have always been thoroughly in earnest."
Another David Copperfield passage demonstrates the inward torment that occurs when Mr. Murdstone treats his second wife horribly. "They undergo a continual punishment; for they are turned inward, to feed upon their own hearts, and their own hearts are very bad feeding."
Since David Copperfield is a novel normally read by seventh and eighth graders, teachers can implement a few games to reinforce what was learned after the book was completed. First, teachers can break the students up in to two groups. The first group can create a map that represents England in the 1800’s. The second group should create a map of what England looks like today. Compare the two and shout out similarities and differences. Finally, since David Copperfield was a writer, have each student create a short story about good verses evil, a theme that was prevalent throughout David Copperfield. Read each one aloud and vote on the top three stories. Additionally, teachers can put together a David Copperfield spelling list and students can use this list to practice not only their spelling, but also their knowledge of the book.