Lesson Plan

Comparing Crime Dramas - Lesson

Lesson Plan

Level(s): Grades 9 to 11

Author: This material has been adapted, with permission, from a unit developed by Mark Zamparo, an Ottawa-based media educator


This lesson encourages students to analyze the differences between crime shows in Canada, Britain and the United States. Students discuss the general differences between Canadian, British and American television dramas as well as the specific differences between crime dramas from these countries. Groups of students then view, evaluate and compare two crime dramas from different countries and report their findings to the class.

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • understand how dramas construct reality
  • appreciate the differences between the constructed reality of crime dramas and crime in real life
  • appreciate the different approaches to this genre in the United States, Canada and other countries
  • understand how the technical aspects of the filming of a crime drama contribute to its overall effect
  • understand the plot formulas that underpin crime drama
  • understand how crime dramas relate to the drama genre

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) are available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.

Lesson Kit: