Analyzing Literary Devices in "Tell-Tale Heart": The Impact of Point of View

Analyzing Literary Devices in "Tell-Tale Heart": The Impact of Point of View
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(18 pages)
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It is not enough for our students to identify point of view; instead, they need to be able to analyze text to explain the IMPACT of the point of view on the reader's understanding. This lesson begins with a brief review of point of view: a synopsis of the characteristics of 1st person, 3rd person limited, and 3rd person omniscient points of view, including the impact on what the reader KNOWS in each type and a brief description of how that knowledge impacts understanding. A Guided Practice activity includes the final paragraphs of the story written in all three points of view, with questions to guide students' thinking. It is recommended that students initially answer questions with a partner before selecting a few to share with the class so that all participate equally. Following the Guided Practice is an Independent Activity that mimics the practice using three brand-new passages, each a different point of view version of another section of the story. The activity ends by asking students to consider why Poe chose the 1st person point of view for the story.

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Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text.
Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure a text, order events within it (e.g., parallel plots), and manipulate time (e.g., pacing, flashbacks) create such effects as mystery, tension, or surprise.
Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
Analyze how differences in the points of view of the characters and the audience or reader (e.g., created through the use of dramatic irony) create such effects as suspense or humor.
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18 pages
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