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For many high school readers, fantasy and horror are genres that maximize engagement with literature. “What the Moon Brings” by H.P. Lovecraft is a brief, yet compelling short story that features elements consistent with both genres: a bizarre dreamscape, an anxious narrator, and the discovery of an underwater city. (The briefness of the story makes it an appropriate time-filler for awkward gaps in teaching schedules.) With this bundle of high school resources covering “What the Moon Brings,” English teachers will save valuable time at home without sacrificing rigor in the classroom. Included are the following: a multiple choice, plot-based quiz; a worksheet composed of rigorous close reading questions; the public domain narrative; and answer keys. Materials are delivered in printable Word Document and PDF formats. 

By completing the quiz, students will demonstrate knowledge of the following:

  • Point of view
  • Setting
  • The narrator’s emotional reaction to the moon
  • The narrator’s obsessiveness
  • Transformative qualities of ordinary things
  • The appearance of an animal in the distance
  • A discovery in the water
  • The smell that overwhelms the narrator’s senses
  • A realization about the reef
  • The narrator’s decision in the resolution

By completing the close reading analysis worksheet, students will:

  • Articulate what the text states both explicitly and implicitly
  • Discern the purpose of em dashes as they are used in context
  • Apply knowledge of various literary devices including personification, foreshadowing, epiphany, and sibilance
  • Explore the author’s diction to draw reasoned inferences about characterization
  • Determine the intended effect of juxtaposition as it is applied in the text
  • Examine plot-based statements for accuracy
  • Choose an applicable theme in the context of a given passage
  • Explore the symbolism of a black condor as it is portrayed in the narrative
  • Defend ideas and claims with valid reasoning and textual evidence
  • Write ideas with clarity, accuracy, and precision