Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Zombie Apocalypse for Junior High

My honors students have been begging to write about "The Zombie Apocalypse," so I finally gave in. Here's their assignment:

The Zombie Apocalypse has happened: A virus has spread around the world, passed on by the bite of a zombie. Once bitten a person becomes a mindless zombie, wandering the neighborhood looking for food, human food. Preferably human brains. Billions of people have either been eaten or turned into zombies. There are few survivors.

Fortunately you foresaw the likelihood of the Zombie Apocalypse, and you are prepared. You have built a secret underground, zombie-proof shelter in your back yard. It took a lot of Saturdays of work, and the complete lack of a social life, but it was worth it. You have enough supplies to feed yourself and six other people until the zombies run out of food and starve to death.

You’ve got to think of the future. When the zombies have finally FINALLY died, you and these six other people will be the only ones left to rebuild civilization. It’s your zombie shelter; it says so right over the door. It’s up to you to decide whom you are going to allow into the shelter and who will be left to become zombie food.

Choose six from among the following people. You might need to do some research to find out what these people actually do.  Explain your reasons for each choice. Then describe what you think life will be like for you and the other survivors.
  1. A school teacher, age 52 (School teachers know lots of important stuff, y’all!)
  2. A pregnant woman (age 25) with a small child (the child is small, so we’ll count the two of them as one)
  3. A nuclear physicist, age 45
  4. A doctor, age 38
  5. An auto mechanic, age 25
  6. A super model, age 27
  7. Your favorite celebrity
  8. Your mom (Your MOM!)
  9. A major league baseball player, age 30
  10. A soldier, age 25
  11. A man in a wheelchair who once worked as a carpenter, age 35
  12. A plumber, age 60
  13. A priest, age 39
  14. An elderly woman who was a chef, age 72
  15. A biologist, age 68
  16. A psychiatrist, age 56
  17. A waitress, age 32
  18. Chemical engineer, age 49
  19. Iron worker, age 32
  20. The highway worker who holds the stop sign, age 26 (Yeah, right.)
 So, what do you think? Whom would you choose? What do you think the 14-year-olds will say? Personally, I can't wait to find out.

UPDATE: You can find the results of the assignment in Return of the Zombie Apocalypse Part 1 and Part 2