Fahrenheit 451: Lesson Three

Contributor: Melissa Kowalski. Lesson ID: 12646

Americans cherish their freedoms, many of which are enshrined in the constitution. Is freedom to read and write whatever you like among those liberties? Who decides what's right? Join the discussion!


Literary Studies

learning style
personality style
Grade Level
High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!


What titles of banned books do you know? Have you ever read a banned book? The concept sounds sinister, doesn't it?

Thousands of books have been banned since the invention of the printing press in the fifteenth century.

From children's books to literary classics to religious texts, no genre of writing is exempt from challenge. To see if you've read any banned books, check out the Frequently Challenged Young Adult Books list, from the American Library Association, that includes many classic literary texts and texts that are often taught in primary and secondary schools.

  • Did you know Fahrenheit 451 is a book that has been banned? Oh, the irony!
  • Why do you think people challenge books and try to get them banned?

To learn more about the reasons for censorship, visit Banned Books: Reasons For Banning Books, from Butler University. Make a list of any reasons you find compelling for banning books. Then, visit Frequently Challenged Books, from the American Library Association, which are organized by year. Choose at least one of the years in the hyperlinks on the page and read the reasons for why certain texts were challenged or banned that year, that were reported to the ALA. Make notes of any reasons you find compelling for banning books.

When you have finished visiting both websites and taking notes, answer the following questions in the notebook or journal you have been keeping for this series:

  • Are there any circumstances where it can be advisable to ban books? Why or why not?
  • How would you react if a book you wanted to read was banned in your library or community?
  • Fahrenheit 451 is a book that has been banned. How does this knowledge affect your perception of the book?

When you have finished your reflection, you are ready to read the next section of Fahrenheit 451. Take out your Fahrenheit 451 Reading Log that you printed out in the first lesson of the series and your copy of the novel that you have been using for the series. (You can find the Fahrenheit 451 Reading Log in Downloadable Resources in the right-hand sidebar. If you missed, or need to review, the previous lessons, find them under Related Lessons in the right-hand sidebar.) Read from where you left off in the previous lesson and read up to where Mildred says, "You just run away from the door, Guy, and don't make us nervous." Then, answer the questions from Lesson Three of your reading log in your notebook or journal.

When you have finished reading, move on the Got It? section to explore why Fahrenheit 451 was censored.


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