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The Tell-Tale Heart
Transcript of The Tell-Tale Heart
Clear Learning Targets
CLT 2.1 (RL 8.3): I can analyze how elements of a story or drama interact.
CLT 2.1: I can analyze how elements of a story or drama interact.
Why does the narrator kill the old man?
CLT 2.2: I can read closely and find textual evidence that require an inference.
When did you find the narrator most frightening?
CLT 2.4: I can determine a theme through plot, setting, and characters.
Big question: What conflicts does the narrator experience before and after the crime?
Full Text vs. Summary
the narrator killed the old man
explanation of how the man disposed of the body
the police officers' visit
the narrator's confession and the explanation as to why he killed the old man.
Why do you think "The Tell-Tale Heart" is still a popular short story even 170 years after it was written.
CLT 2.2 (RL 8.1): I can read closely and find textual evidence (answers) that require an inference.
CLT 2.4 (RL 8.2): I can determine a theme through plot, setting, and characters.
At first, how does the narrator behave in the presence of the police?
What sound drives the narrator to confess the crime and how does it lead to him confessing his crime?
The narrator kills the old man because he finds his eye disturbing.
When the police come, he remains calm.
The imagined sound of the old man's beating heart makes him confess.
Draw conclusions: What does the narrator fear? What details in the story indicate his fears?
Draw conclusions: What causes the narrator to change his behavior?
Evaluate: Is the “tell-tale heart” in the title the old man’s heart or the narrator’s? Explain your interpretation.
His fear is that people may think he is insane. His fears are reflected by his repeated statements that he is not mad.
When the narrator hears what he thinks is the old man's heart beating, his behavior changes from calm to agitated.
The sound could be interpreted as any of the following:
the imagined sound of the old man's heart
the narrator's heart, pounding in guilt and fear
the old man's watch
Has his conflict been resolved?
Why do you think people sometimes confess to having done something wrong, even if there is little chance that their wrongdoing will be discovered?
Before the crime, the conflict is between reality and the narrator's fantasy - the imagined conflict with the old man.
After the crime, the conflict is between wanting to conceal his crime and the guilt he feels.
The imagined conflict with the old man may be resolved in the narrator's mind, but he has lost his sanity and his humanity.
Feelings of guilt may cause people to confess.
What are four details you found in the second summary that you did not find in the first?
What are four details that appear in both summaries?
description of the opening of the story
explanation of how the man loved the old man
the revelation of the problem of the old man's eye
the description of the nightly visits that lead to the murder.
Explain how reading a summary differs from reading he full text.
the summary gives only the essential parts of the story
the story is much more vivid and interesting
the summary tells the reader that the narrator is insane
the story shows the reader through the narrator's wods and actions that he is insane.
Which summary do you prefer reading? Why?
Do you think a summary or the original work should be read first?