Conflict: Fun with Lit Terms in Universal Studios Orlando

On a recent trip to Universal Orlando I happened upon another great example of literary terms being openly taught in a theme park.  While I’ve already written about ways you can incorporate your own literary lessons into any theme park, Universal’s attraction ‘Disaster!’ actually comes right out and illustrates the term ‘conflict’–and it does so in a very entertaining way!

As a teacher, I spend several days teaching about the concept of conflict.  We read different versions of different types of conflict in various stories–man vs. man, man vs. nature, man vs. himself, etc.–and then we practice writing our own conflicts in our own stories.  But at Universal, kids (and adults) get to see several examples of conflict first hand–and then experience it themselves at the end of the ride, complete with scorching heat and raging water.  I don’t know about you, but to me that seems way more fun than dissecting an O. Henry story!

Though I do love O. Henry stories!

During this same show, I also had a lesson in the importance of volunteering.  No, not the kind of volunteering that actually helps the world (though that would have been awesome), the kind of volunteering that makes an attraction super fun.  That is, when asked for a volunteer at the beginning of a show, I raised my hand–and I was picked.

Thus, I had a very different perspective for the show slash ride, Disaster: A Major Motion Picture Ride Starring You!  It did, after all, really star me!  It was great! I had a fantastic front row seat for the beginning of the show…and an on stage and on screen seat for the rest!  And more than that, I got to be literally involved in the conflict going on on stage–particularly when they dropped those boulders on my head.

I think that would be an example of man vs. nature conflict, don’t you?

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