Identify and enjoy features of classic literature.
Analyze interactions among discourse elements that constitute a genre.
Acquire vocabulary and grammar structures in context.
Develop higher order thinking skills to spot clues, make inferences, think critically and draw conclusions to pose arguments in answer to writing and speaking prompts.
Engage in individual and collaborative group work in integrated language skills.
About the story
The Monkey's Paw is a classic "three wishes" story that doubles as a horror story and a cautionary tale; reminding us that unintended consequences often accompany the best intentions. This widely read story is a favorite in classrooms around the world. The story was first published in 1902 and then featured in The Lady of the Barge, published in 1911. "The Monkey's Paw" is the story of the White family and what happens to them when they get a mystical, magical monkey's paw that has the power to grant three wishes. The Monkey's Paw was featured as The Short Story of the Day on Thu, Oct 29, 2020 This story is featured in our collection of Short Stories for Middle School, Halloween Stories, and Mystery Stories.
W.W. Jacobs was born an English rather than American writer. William Wymark Jacobs was born in Wapping, London, England in 1863 and remained with us until 1943. While Jacobs is best known for his horror story The Monkey's Paw, his body of larger work is known for its humor. His father worked as a dockhand and wharf manager on the South Devon Wharf. Jacobs seems to draw heavily upon his father's experiences working at the docks and his stories often feature the adventures of wayward seamen and mariners working themselves in and out of precarious predicaments. W.W. Jacobs has become one of my favorite short story writers. His stories are consistently well written and often of optimal length with most stories taking about fifteen minutes to read. In "The Monkey's Paw," author W. W. Jacobs uses foreshadowing to give the reader hints about future events in the story and to provide insight into the behavior of the characters. The foreshadowing also helps to create suspense and gives the story a sense of the unknown and of the supernatural.
"Be careful what you wish for, you may receive it." --Anonymous Part I Without, the night was cold and wet, but in the small parlour of Laburnum villa the blinds were drawn and the fire burned brightly. Father and son were at chess; the former, who possessed ideas about the game involving radical chances, putting his king into such sharp and unnecessary perils that it even provoked comment from the white-haired old lady knitting placidly by the fire. "Hark at the wind," said Mr. White, who, having seen a fatal mistake after it was too late, was amiably desirous of preventing his son from seeing it. "I'm listening," said the latter grimly surveying the board as he stretched out his hand. "Check." "I should hardly think that he's come tonight, " said his father, with his hand poised over the board. "Mate," replied the son. "That's the worst of living so far out," balled Mr. White with sudden and unlooked-for violence; "Of all the beastly, slushy, out of the way places to live in, this is the worst. Path's a bog, and the road's a torrent. I don't know what people are thinking about. I suppose because only two houses in the road are let, they think it doesn't matter." "Never mind, dear," said his wife soothingly; "perhaps you'll win the next one." Mr. White looked up sharply, just in time to intercept a knowing glance between mother and son. the words died away on his lips, and he hid a guilty grin in his thin grey beard. "There he is," said Herbert White as the gate banged to loudly and heavy footsteps came toward the door.