"Rapunzel," a Grimms' Fairy Tale, Close Reading Questions & Text

This editable 14-question guided reading worksheet promotes active reading strategies, facilitating general reading comprehension and higher-order analysis of a Grimms’ fairy tale: “Rapunzel.” By completing this activity, high school students will demonstrate general plot recall and active engagement with the text via making annotations and answering high-order questions. Though labeled a close reading handout, it may also serve as an assessment tool that holds students accountable for assigned independent or group reading of this short story.

The resource is delivered in Word Document and Google Document. An answer key is provided, as is a copy of the narrative, which is in the public domain. “Rapunzel” a 1,440-word text, has an estimated Lexile measure of 1100-1200, making it an appropriate addition to any short story or fantasy unit at the middle school level. It may also be suitable for struggling readers in a high school setting.

This resource aligns well to Academic Literacy Project teaching principles and may serve as the basis for small-group discussions. Through these discussions, students decode language and pose/respond to questions relating to plot, broad topics, and character development, demonstrating an ability to analyze how complex characters transform and advance the plot and themes by applying logic and citing compelling, meaningful textual evidence. They will also evaluate their peers’ reasoning and use of rhetoric to advance claims, clarifying or challenging unclear ideas. Using this resource for structured guidance, students, ultimately, will present information, conclusions, and supporting textual evidence clearly, concisely, and appropriately, thereby helping their peers comprehend their thinking.

Questions pertain to the following:

  • Identifying what the text states explicitly as well as implicitly
  • Exploring character motivations, whether explicitly stated in the text or implied through character actions, and articulating responses clearly
  • Analyzing character interactions to discern character motivations and intent
  • Demonstrating understanding of the narrative’s suspenseful tone
  • Analyzing the authors’ craft, paying special attention to diction, in order to discern logical inferences
  • Applying knowledge of literary devices to the text, identifying and explaining examples of situational irony and dramatic irony to the text
  • Defining complex words in context, taking into consideration denotative definitions and connotative associations and using reference materials as needed
  • Responding clearly, concisely, and accurately to analytical questioning
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About this resource


Created: Jan 19, 2020

Updated: Jan 28, 2020

docx, 1 MB


pdf, 158 KB


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