Objective: As the book opens, we learn that Dr. James Sheppard has been to the scene of a suicide and that the woman's husband died mysteriously a year earlier. James returns home and gets into a discussion with his sister, Caroline, who is quite a gossip. In fact, James doesn't trust her with everything he knows. The objective of this lesson is to explore the topic of gossip. How could Caroline's gossip effect the outcome of the story? How can gossip in general effect people's lives?
1) Class discussion:
As a doctor, James' thoughts are usually grounded in hard facts. Why was James afraid of Caroline and all her gossip? How could Caroline's gossip hurt others?
Divide the class into small groups. Have each group gossip about the first chapter among themselves and record the group's thoughts about how Mrs. Ferrars and her husband died. Does...
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