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Estimated Time Needed

5 days, 45 minutes per day

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Sees Behind Trees
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  • Culminating Assignment
    • Read, Write, Think: In a three-paragraph essay, trace the role moss plays throughout the story, trace the role of the sash throughout the story, and explain their connection to the plot and the characters. Be sure to re-read the story and provide specific evidence from the story in each of your paragraphs.

      Helpful Hint: Re-read the last passage, where Sees Behind Trees thinks, “I turned the sash in my hand, the sash my mother had woven. It was soft to the touch, as if it had been made from silky moss.”

      Possible Answer: 

      • Symbolism of the moss — Used to symbolize the transition to manhood; is a threat to Walnut because his inability to hit it stands in the way of his transition to adulthood and he doesn’t know how to “fix” what’s wrong; source of stress and worry because Walnut doesn’t want to disappoint his family.

      • Symbolism of the sash — Part of the “game” (or what he thinks is a game) that he plays with his mother; acts as a tool that takes away his sight completely, but this allows him to sharpen his senses of smell and hearing.

      • In the last paragraph, the writer weaves together how, at first, the two objects were symbols of Walnut’s weakness but, ultimately, became symbols of his strength, as well as his transition to manhood.

  • Additional Tasks
    • What are the differences between the adult names and the children’s names? We know how Sees Behind Trees receives his name. Consider the possible reasons behind the names Brings the Deer and Gray Fire. Create a name for yourself based on your personality and strengths.

      Possible Answer:

      • The adult names are specific to the individuals’ skills or personalities, whereas the children’s names are not. Their names are simple, everyday objects. Gray Fire’s name comes from his ability to move as silently as smoke, and Brings the Deer is named because of his archery skills.

      Fluency: Re-read the story aloud and look for passages where the author uses a lot of description and images. What kind of figurative language does the author use in these passages? Which ones create the strongest images and why?

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