After reading the story, “Once Upon A Time” by Nadine Gordmier, respond to the questions below in a Google doc in your English 12 folder. This is the first short story of the year, so use it to test your own understanding. We will discuss the story together after you complete this activity. Be honest with yourself and evaluate what you did and did not know before/after the discussion and think about how many hints you had to use (and if those hints were enough to help you).
Create a new Google Doc Titled: Once Upon A Time (This could be in your
Link to story: Once Upon A Time (story begins after paragraph 7 with the lines…”In a house, in a suburb, in a city….”)
What is ironic about the ending of the story? Hint can be found here.
What does the wall symbolize? Hint here.
Why does the family feel they have to separate themselves from the world? What line(s) from the story prove this?
Who or what does the wise old witch represent?
What is the tone of the story? Hint can be found on this ugly, but factually correct page
What is the message (theme) of the story? What larger statement about society is being made?
The title of the story leads us to believe that this is a fairy tale. What literary elements of fairy tales are evident in the story?
Why might this be considered a parody of a fairy tale?
Are the husband and wife racists who create their own fate? Why or why not?
Is the violent ending necessary to convey the author’s point or is it over the top?
After the discussion, edit your notes and hilight areas that you had trouble identifying.
On your reading response blog, write a new post where you reflect on how you did on this activity. You can include thoughts like:
- did you understand the story?
- were you able to identify the literary elements?
- what are your strengths in story analysis and comprehension?
- Did you use any reading strategies? If so, what were they and did they help?
- Do you have any areas that you need to improve?
Link to class notes for discussion of story: https://docs.google.com/a/mycw.org/document/d/1D97lpW5_MN_g4EeigoUYf1Si2J0I7SULdgWw-Z0oB0Y/edit?usp=sharing