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Short stories are a vital part of English literature. These short story studies can be used to build a short story unit, to supplement other texts, or as a standby lesson.


Use this with our FREE Introduction to Short Stories two-page handout.


These activities support Amy Bloom's recent short story 'Silver Water', which can be found free online by searching for the title.


Activities correspond to Bloom’s taxonomy of lower- to higher-order tasks.

  • A comprehension question checks knowledge and understanding
  • Application questions ask students to apply their knowledge of literary or rhetorical technique
  • Analytical questions interrogate the story’s effect, mood, and construction-strategies.
  • Creative writing tasks use an aspect of the story as a springboard to write creatively, discursively, or persuasively.


Bloom's tragic story about a young girl watching her sister's struggle with schizophrenia has been successfully used with a Stage 5 / Year 10 class (16 years).

Short Story Study: Amy Bloom, 'Silver Water'

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