I'd like some short story ideas

Discussion in 'General Education' started by DamienJasper, Jul 25, 2023.

  1. DamienJasper

    DamienJasper Companion

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    Jul 25, 2023

    I'm looking to overhaul some of my 7th grade Reading curriculum. I've sort of grown weary of some of the same, musty old texts that 21st century students really are growing further in time and personal connection with.

    Does anyone have any short story recommendations in the 3,000 word range? I'm on the lookout for stuff in the realm of sci-fi, fantasy, or even horror (but the genre isn't a deal breaker) published some time since, oh say...2008, when many of my incoming students were born.

    I've been making frequent trips to the local library for short story books, but a lot aren't really passing muster for one reason or another. I'm honestly starting to get an eye ache from all this reading, so any help would be appreciated.
     
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  3. Peachpies

    Peachpies Rookie

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    Not sure of the word count or if the reading level fits your class, however..
    1. Teacher Tamer by Avi
    2. Rogue Wave by Theodore Taylor
    3. Scout's Honor by Avi
    4. The Circuit by Francisco Jimenez
     
  4. DamienJasper

    DamienJasper Companion

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    Thanks. I'll check.

    (Rogue Wave is the first text I do every year. It will be on the chopping block soon enough, though.)
     
  5. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    “The Storm” by McKnight Malmar
    “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner
    “The Boarded Window” by Ambrose Bierce
    “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson
    “The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell
    “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas” by Ursula LeGuin
    “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
    “The Monkey’s Paw” by W.W. Jacobs
    “Where are You Going? Where Have You Been?” By Joyce Carol Oates
    “Lamb to the Slaughter” by Roald Dahl
    “The Landlady” by Roald Dahl

    These were some of the favorites of kids from the years that I taught middle school.
     
  6. DamienJasper

    DamienJasper Companion

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    Those are all appreciated, but unfortunately, the exact ones I'm trying to steer away from.

    I found a sci-fi one I like and one from rural Idaho (where I am) that were published in 2008 and 2023, respectively, so I'm making progress.

    For the sake of connecting, I've really been trying to focus on ones that clearly inhabit the world my students live in.

    I appreciate the reply, however.
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    It is also important to show students that even situations that are not specifically about their area or about them can connect with them, too, so I wouldn’t recommend throwing out all of classics.
     
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  8. DamienJasper

    DamienJasper Companion

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    I didn't throw out all the classics. But time does march on. "Hatchet" and "Maniac MaGee" had their time, I think.
     
  9. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    I guess it just seems that way because you didn’t seem to like any of the suggestions given.

    With the dwindling funds for new materials and ever-changing requirements, we were often stuck with the same materials for years on end. And then some were such favorites with the kids that we wanted to include them every year.
     
  10. DamienJasper

    DamienJasper Companion

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    Nothing suggested was very 2008 or newer.

    Yeah, not provided. Hence why I'm looking for stories myself.
     
  11. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    Silas House may have something you like.
     
  12. miss-m

    miss-m Groupie

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    My husband reads a lot of sci fi short stories, and his initial recommendations are “I, Row-Boat” (2006), stuff by Ted Chiang, and “They’re Made of Meat” (which he says is from 1991 but is a classic).
     
  13. DamienJasper

    DamienJasper Companion

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    I'll try the "I, Row-Boat" one. I assume it's a pun on "I, Robot".

    I think I've heard of "They're Made of Meat".
     
  14. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    It's ok to use traditional middle school literature with your students. Part of being a literate citizen is knowing the shared literature from nursery rhymes to Shakespere. It's not only great artwork, it's part of our culture that binds us together.
     
  15. Kittywake

    Kittywake New Member

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    Aug 21, 2023


    Have you tried Stephen King? He has numerous horror, thriller, fantasy, and drama novels and short stories. And there are several collections and individual short stories. I think these stories suit students who like to read about the paranormal, monsters, curses, and other scary things.

    I can also recommend Neil Gaiman's How to Talk to Girls at Parties, 2006. This is more than what you were looking for, but I think it's a very interesting and funny story.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2023

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