Technology In The English Classroom
Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Elements of the Short Story
Online Activities 
Technology in the Classroom

Plot

Point of View  

Character

Setting 

Theme

Plot:  What makes a good story?
Character: Defining who we are. 


Setting
Setting is so much more than where the action of a story takes place. It can also determine how characters behave and even influence the mood of the story. Click on the activities below to learn more about setting.

Activity 1: Click on Describing Setting.  Read the information and then click on What Setting Tells Us.. When you have finished, click the back button on your browser to return to this page.

Activity 2: Painting pictures with words.  In this activity you will work with figurative language in describing setting, and you will examine the relationship between character and setting.

 

Try Writing Your Own Short Story:  Some Activities and Sites to get you started.

What is it about a story that makes you say, "this was really good!" Chances are that the action in the story had something to do with your response.  Click on the activities below to explore elements of plot .

Activity 1: Click on The Elements of Plot. Read the information and then click on "What Goes into Plot" at the bottom of the page.  When you have finished, click the  back button   on the  browser to return to this page. To learn a few more important terms related to plot, click on Terms.

Activity 2: Click on Plotting a Fairy Tale and put the elements of plot in the correct order. If you are having trouble with this site, click here.

Theme: What Does It All Mean?

What message are we supposed to get from a short story? And how are we supposed to get the message? Theme brings all of the elements of the short story together.

Activity 1: Click on Literary Analysis Terms and read about theme.

Activity 2: Read The Fun They Had by Isaac Asimov. When you have finished, write a paragraph explaining the theme of the story. As you are forming your opinion, keep in mind the impact setting, plot, characters, and point of view have in presenting the "whole picture."

Reviewing What You Know:

Plot:
Matching
Quiz (fill in the blank)

Character:
Matching
Quiz (fill in the blank)

Figurative Language:
Matching
Quiz (multiple choice)

Name That Literary Element (an interactive game)

Terry Carr

 

 

Are we solely defined by what
we look like, or how we
act?  Does anyone bother to look inside of us to see why we behave the way we do? Explore the nature of character through the following activities.
Activity 1: Click on Creating Character. Read the information and then click on Learning About Character. When you have finished, click the back button on your browser to return to this page. To learn a few more terms about character, click here.

Activity 2: Click on the picture of the man above to create a character profile.

The Eye of the
 Beholder:

 

 

Point of View
"Truth is a hard deer to hunt," states John, the son of a priest, in By the Waters of Babylon. What is true for one man, may not be true for another. Our perspective on life is influenced by many factors such as age, experience, culture, and time. What is true for you today, may not be so tomorrow. To examine how point of view affects the development of the short story, click on the following activities.

Activity 1: Click on Point of View to review the different types of point of view. When you are sure you understand the differences among the three, click the back button on the browser to return to this page. Next click on activity 2 to practice what you just read.


Activity 2: In this activity, you will take a given scenario and rewrite it showing different points of view.

Photo of man under Character heading: Landor Associates. www/photoflo.com/photos/corporate/photos-corporate.htm