Article
Allan Davey
The Tell-Tale Heart

This creepy but super fun play is based on Edgar Allan Poe’s classic tale of murder and madness.

By Mack Lewis
From the September 2016 Issue

Learning Objective: to explore how the author creates a suspenseful mood 

Other Key Skills: author’s craft, character, inference, figurative language, character motivation

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Quizzes (2)
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Answer Key (1)
Step-by-Step Lesson Plan

Close Reading, Critical Thinking, Skill Building

1. PREPARING TO READ

2. READING THE PLAY (30 minutes)

3. SKILL BUILDING

Differentiated Writing Prompts
For On-Level Readers

In a well-organized paragraph, explain how the author creates a suspenseful mood in The Tell-Tale Heart. Support your ideas with text evidence.

For Struggling Readers

Choose one scene. In a well-organized paragraph, discuss the author’s use of suspense in that scene. Give examples from the text.

For Advanced Readers

One word that describes the mood of the play is suspenseful. Think of another word that describes the mood and explain how the author creates that mood.

Literature Connection: Other texts that make use of suspense

The Hunger Games 
by Suzanne Collins (novel)

“The Monkey’s Paw”
by W.W. Jacobs (short story)

"The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street”
by Rod Serling (The Twilight Zone teleplay)