Education Technology

NCTE: Collaborating on the Short Story

Published on 07/19/2006

Activity Overview

Students will work with a partner to write a story modeled after Poe's "The Oval Portrait." They may use the directions created in the exploratory activity, or they may use the sample directions provided in the Directions section of this activity.

Before the Activity

See the attached Activity PDF file for detailed instructions for this activity.

Print the appropriate pages from the Activity for your class.

Install the LearningCheck(tm) App on the students' graphing calculators following the attached instructions.

Go over the lesson objectives. Have students re-read "The Oval Portrait" and review the directions for writing a story using Poe's story as a model. Place students into partner groups and direct them in pre-writing activities, using the directions created by the class. Ask them to determine characters (names and descriptions), basic plot, and ideas for ways to use literary devices before they begin to write the actual story.

During the Activity

  • Distribute the appropriate pages from the Activity to your class
  • Distribute the LearningCheck(tm) file(s) to your class using TI Connect(tm) and the appropriate TI Connectivity cable
  • Follow the procedures outlined in the Activity


  • Students will:
  • Identify literary elements in Poe's "The Oval Portrait."
  • Examine effects of various literary devices.
  • Determine how a person might write a similar story.
  • Write a collaborative short story that includes elements in common with Poe's "The Oval Portrait."
  • Demonstrate understanding of literary elements and devices and apply that understanding to students' own writing.
  • Identify and evaluate literary elements and devices in peer writing.
  • After the Activity

    Have students send their stories to one another using the unit-to-unit cables and read them. Discuss the stories if time permits.