This editable 7-question guided reading worksheet promotes active reading strategies, facilitating general reading comprehension and higher-order analysis of a Grimms’ fairy tale: “The Godfather.” 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. “The Godfather,” a 627-word text, has an estimated Lexile measure of 700-800, 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
- Demonstrating understanding of the narrative’s surreal tone, identifying several pieces of textual evidence that advances the tone
- Exploring character motivations, whether explicitly stated in the text or implied through character actions, and articulating responses clearly
- Analyzing character interactions to discern character intent
- Responding clearly, concisely, and accurately to analytical questioning
- Analyzing textual details to draw inferences and support rational arguments
- Applying knowledge of literary devices to the text, articulating how the title is ironic
- Exploring cause-and-effect relationships
- Writing with clarity and precision