Thanksgiving Short Stories for Middle School or High School

If you’re like me, you thought, “Hey, it’s Thanksgiving soon! I think I’ll teach Thanksgiving short stories for middle school or high school.” So you did a web search for “Thanksgiving short stories for middle school or high school” and probably found nothing.

How can there not be Thanksgiving short stories for middle school or high school?!?!?!

I’ve decided not to waste my time pondering this mystery and instead used my own creativity and decided to teach short stories that make me grateful that I’m not a specific character in the short story.

Is it a stretch? Probably. Teaching high school or middle school, however, requires flexibility.

Short Stories That Will Make You Grateful

Click on the story title for lesson plans. Click here to have lesson plans in your inbox every Monday.

  1. Scarlet Ibis Imagery“The Scarlet Ibis” by James Hurst. The narrator tells the story about his brother, Doodle, who dies during a thunderstorm. That’s bad enough. But the narrator blames himself for Doodle’s death, and for good reason: It was his fault. I sure am grateful I’m not a character in this story.
  2. “Harrison Bergeron” by Kurt Vonnegut. Everything sucks in the year 2081. Harrison Bergeron wants to change it. He gets killed. Things continue to suck in the year 2081. I sure am grateful I’m not a character in this story.

    The Interlopers Lesson Plans

    Ever feel like you’re stuck under a tree having your face eaten by wolves trying to come up with short story lesson plans?

  3. “The Interlopers” by Saki. Two enemies square off in the forest with the aim of killing each other. A tree falls on them. That sucks. But it gets worse. The two enemies become BFFs, but before they can get out from under a tree and publish the good tidings, wolves come and eat them. I sure am grateful I’m not one of them.
  4. “To Build a Fire” by Jack London. When it’s -270 degrees, you should stay inside. And if you go outside, you better stay dry. And if you get wet, you better build a fire. Unfortunately, the story’s protagonist goes outside, falls in a river, can’t build a fire, and dies. I sure am grateful I’m not him.

    Sound of Thunder Lesson Plans

    Get ready for the metaphoric sound of thunderous applause as you unveil these “A Sound of Thunder” lesson plans to an adoring class.

  5. “A Sound of Thunder” by Ray Bradbury. Eckels thinks he’s a big time hunter. He goes back in time to hunt dinosaurs. He panics and kills a butterfly. This changes everything in the future, for the worse. Eckels gets shot in the head. I sure am grateful I’m not him.
  6. “The Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant. Madame Loisel hates her life. She wants to be wealthy, loved, and admired. She’s not. She’s invited to a party and borrows a diamond necklace. She loses it and buys another one for about 8-trillion dollars to replace it. Now she really hates her life because she and her husband work like slaves for 10 years to pay off the loans. Turns out the necklace was fake. I sure am grateful I’m not her.
  7. “The Cask of Amontillado” by Edgar Allan Poe.” Montresor wants revenge. Fortunato is drunk. Montresor chains Fortunato to a wall in the catacombs and walls him up. I sure am grateful I’m not Fortunato.
  8. “The Monkey’s Paw” by W.W. Jacobs. Herbert thinks he’s clever, so he makes fun of an enchanted monkey’s paw. Herbert’s dad makes a wish on the monkey’s paw for 40 pounds. Herbert still thinks he’s clever. Herbert is killed at work and Mr. White gets 40 pounds compensation. I sure am grateful I’m not Herbert.
  9. “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson. Tessie wins the lottery. The entire village stones her to death. I sure am grateful I didn’t win the lottery.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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