“The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien can be used to teach vocabulary. I have used these materials in a pre-college summer bridge program at my university. These materials are also suitable for high school students. This package includes seven items.
(1) A six-page list of 99 words from the book for student use. This list includes page numbers and space for students to write definitions. In addition, there are two lists of the words for your use: a list in the order in which the words appear in the book, and an alphabetical list.
(2) A 50-question pre-assessment to determine how many words students know before you teach the unit. This instrument can also be used as a post-assessment so students can see their progress. All 50 questions are multiple choice; students must select the definition for each word. An answer key is included.
(3) Four vocabulary tests, including an answer key for each test. Test #1, on words from pp. 1-61, contains 25 questions. Test #2, on words from pp. 62-134, has 25 questions. Test #3, on words from pp. 135-188, has 17 questions. Test #4, on words from p. 189-246, contains 20 questions. Each test includes a variety of questions, including higher-order thinking questions such as determining which word best fits into a sentence and writing original sentences using words appropriately. On each test, some questions may be easier for students who are current with their reading. This can create an incentive for students to read.
(4) An exercise that asks students to locate 10 unfamiliar words in any segment of the book. This exercise can be used as homework, an in-class activity, or small-group work.