“Flowers for Algernon” is a poignant short story that really gets students thinking critically about real life dilemmas. This resource includes: pre-reading prompts that can be turned into a four corners class debate, pre-reading vocabulary, during reading progress reports/comprehension questions, and, the unit test.
The test combines the vocab and the story. Answer keys are included for everything: the test, as well as the during reading Progress Reports (since the Summary of Findings will vary, there is not an answer in any of those places because I only use that to ensure the student has the basic gist of what happened in that portion)!
These activities cover the following Common Core State Standards:
Key Ideas and Details
Cite the textual evidence that most strongly supports an analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including its relationship to the characters, setting, and plot; provide an objective summary of the text.
Analyze how particular lines of dialogue or incidents in a story or drama propel the action, reveal aspects of a character, or provoke a decision.
Craft and Structure
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including analogies or allusions to other texts.
Vocabulary Acquisition and Use
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words or phrases based on grade 8 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; gather vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.
Speaking and Listening
Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 8 topics, texts, and issues, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
Acknowledge new information expressed by others, and, when warranted, qualify or justify their own views in light of the evidence presented
Keywords: Flowers for Algernon, Daniel Keyes, comprehension questions, unit test, vocabulary, short story, analysis, mental health