Now, our previous post was about how to teach your students to do a literary analysis or critical analysis.  By now, you might be wondering if you can easily find a literary analysis practice worksheet to help your ELA students learn critical analysis skills. 

I figured that a follow-up post of worksheets and activities that you can quickly and easily use would be in order.

So if you are teaching your students literary analysis skills and you need a little help, check out these great literary analysis activities and worksheets to use in your ELA classroom.

1. Nouvelle ELA – quote analysis


The first resource we have for you today is this PowerPoint and analyzing quotes activity by Nouvelle ELA.  

The aim of the resources is to help your students learn to analyze and embed quotes in their writing.

In this fun literary analysis lesson, students analyze movie quotes and then have scaffolded help to practice embedding those quotes into their writing.  Students practice the skills of:

  • Identifying who said the quote
  • Summarizing the context of the quote, and
  • Analyzing why the quote matters

Included in the activity are

  • an editable PowerPoint that introduces how to analyze quotes
  • an Interactive notebook lesson
  • literary quote analysis homework worksheet that is print and go
  • and an editable literary quote analysis homework sheet

2. A moonlighting English teacher – prose analysis and close reading

The second literary analysis practice worksheet we have today is this prose analysis and close reading bundle by A moonlighting English teacher.

The bundle includes activities to help students understand over 55 high-level literary terms, as well as practice and improve their skills in close reading and critical analysis.

While most of the resources were designed with specific texts in mind, most are able to stand alone as individual lessons or resources and are easily adaptable to whatever texts you are using in your class.  

Included in the bundle are:

  • a list of every literary term and definition covered in each activity  in the bundle
  • AP Literature prose analysis essay materials, including prose analysis passages and activities from The Poisonwood Bible, The Things They Carried, The Good Earth, Nectar in a Sieve, and Remembering
  • an AP Literature prose analysis essay activity that helps students break down two official sample essays
  • AP Literature prose essay materials, including advice and model outlines, a self-assessment, an a general rubric
  • seven creative activities to analyze literary devices in any novel or story, which is also distance-learning compatible
  • an activity to scaffold improving prose analysis commentary using Nectar in a Sieve
  • an activity on diction and motifs using The Good Earth
  • two quote analysis activities using The Good Earth
  • a nonfiction analysis and a rhetorical analysis handout
  • an activity on humor using The Poisonwood Bible
  • an activity on specific syntax devices using The Poisonwood Bible and an activity on the usage of low diction using The Things They Carried
  • a general AP Literature prose analysis essay practice/outline worksheet
  • creative activities on tone using The Poisonwood Bible and irony using Cry, the Beloved Country
  • and a self-created prose essay assignment 

3. Reading the rapids – identifying literary elements

Other great literary analysis lessons include these ones by Reading the rapids.  This fun bundle will help your students identify literary elements.

Students learn and reinforce their learning by watching animated shorts, using graphic organizers, applying their learning in activities, and assessing their peers.  Literary elements students learn about include:

  • direct and indirect characterization 
  • types of conflict (man vs self/man/society/technology/nature/supernatural) 
  • what is and is not an inference
  • types of irony 
  • juxtaposition
  • main idea
  • mood and tone
  • personification
  • plot
  • and theme

The bundle covers many different CCSS and each lesson plan states which skills are covered in that lesson.

The author also has this great free literary device inventory and reflection to help you work out your students’ level of knowledge about literary devices.  It also uses animated shorts so that the activity is fun and engaging for students to complete.

3. Tracee Orman – showing evidence from the text


The next literary analysis practice worksheet is included in this activity by Tracee Orman. In the activities, students will learn how to adequately show evidence from the text. 

In the activity, students use three non-fiction texts and questions to practice citing evidence from the text.  Suggested answers for each question are included, as well as the evidence students should use.

The passages include interesting scenarios including

  • a woman and her son are sprayed with poop from a plane flying overhead
  • a woman takes in two kittens only to find out they’re bobcats
  • a federal court rules on whether a monkey (or other animal/non-human) can sue for copyright infringement.

The files are provided as non-editable PDFs or a Google slides version of the worksheet for students to respond to digitally.

4. Reading and writing haven – analyzing different text types


The next literary analysis practice worksheet we have for you is this bundle by Reading and writing haven. The bundle enables students to practice analyzing a variety of texts, including non-fiction, fiction, paired texts, short films, movies, advertisements, and poetry.  

The materials and the scaffolding guiding questions and prompts enable students to better understand how to analyze texts.  Included in the bundle are 

  • a direct instruction presentation and guided notes that breaks down the concept of analyzing 
  • a whole-class analyzing activity that uses a poem, a short film, and two political cartoons (suggested use is included) 
  • an assignment that contains scaffolded questions to use with any text
  • a short film analysis assignment (of Night and Day) with scaffolded questions and an extended response (film available on YouTube)
  • seven graphic organizers to use with a variety of texts (commercials, songs, fiction, nonfiction, poems, movies, and paired texts – text suggestions/recommendations with links are included)
  • a pre- and post-assessment 
  • a literary analysis essay example to help move students from analyzing verbally to analyzing in a literary analysis format
  • an editable single-point rubric and outline with guiding questions to accompany the literary analysis essay
  • a unit overview (recommendations for order and text ideas)
  • suggested texts and links to sources to use for whole-class modeling purposes

5. Secondary Sara – finding evidence from the text

Another way to get your students to practice literary analysis when studying any novel is by using this fun activity by Secondary Sara.

The Common Core-aligned activity is set up as a “conspiracy theory” that students have to “prove”.  To do so, students practice finding and using evidence to back up a claim. 

In the activity, student groups choose a question about the novel and come up with a “conspiracy theory” (thesis) to answer that question.

While reading, small groups gather text evidence from the novel and analyze it using a four-step method: What does it SAY?, What does it MEAN?, Why does it MATTER?, How does it prove your THESIS?

Once they have completed the novel and graphic organizer, students give presentations on their thesis and the evidence they collected to support it. 

The rest of the class actively listens by following along with their own listening guide to track who said what.

You can also use an optional follow-up essay assignment to individually assess literary analysis skills.

Included in the download are:

  • a rubric that clearly assesses speaking standards
  • teacher guide that provides essential questions, I Can statements, CCSS standards for grades 6-8, a sample calendar of lessons, and tips for successful implementation of the group project. 
  • directions sheet and rubric
  • thesis statement development/approval sheet
  • case file planning sheet (chart to collect and analyze text evidence while reading)
  • listening guide for presentations
  • sample PowerPoint template to give students so they know how to format and organize all of their evidence (and it helps them transition into an essay later)
  • literary analysis essay assignment (directions and rubric)
  • Google, Word, and PDF versions
  • bonus pages: a nonfiction activity to research what conspiracy theories are, evaluating evidence in a theory mini-lesson, and analyzing the quality of an essay’s claims mini-lesson 

7. Write on with Miss G – low-risk literary analysis practice

Another fun literary analysis practice worksheet is included in this speed-dating lesson by Write on with Miss G.  The discussion and literary analysis activities work with any novel.

In the activity, students are paired up to discuss questions aligned with the Common Core standards.  After each round, students rotate to a new partner and discuss a new question.

By the end of class, students will have interacted with 15+ peers and discussed 15+ questions! This means students get lots of low-risk, repeated practice in the peer-to-peer setting. 

This literary analysis practice activity enables your entire class to participate in literary analysis in a low-risk setting and set students up for success in whole-class discussions (that you can do following the speed-dating lesson).

This activity works best at the end of a novel, as it contains questions that ask about “the big picture” (theme, symbolism, etc.)

Included in the activity are

  • detailed teacher instructions
  • editable student worksheet with an exit ticket
  • 27 editable  Common Core-aligned question cards 
  • blank question cards (so you can add your own questions)

Literary elements covered in the questions include

  • theme
  • symbolism
  • author’s choices
  • author’s purpose
  • character development
  • word choice
  • setting
  • point of view
  • objective summary
  • and structure

8. Tracee Orman – interactive flipbook

Another literary analysis practice worksheet is included in this interactive notebook flipbook for any novel by Tracee Orman.

You can choose to use the literary analysis activity as an interactive flipbook, or you can choose to use them as literary analysis practice worksheets.  

The activities cover six main areas.  These areas are

  • character development: students must analyze how the setting, events, and other characters have influenced each other
  • setting: students analyze how the setting affects the tone of the story and how different themes utilize the setting to convey their messages
  • point-of-view: students evaluate either first-person, third-person limited, or third-person omniscient narration–depending on the novel or story–and how different events, the setting, and other characters impact the way it is narrated; students also analyze why the author chose that perspective and how it influences different themes 
  • plot analysis: students choose different events from the novel and analyze how each contributes to the tension and conflict in the story; students also evaluate the author’s structure of the story and why/how the author uses various literary techniques for storytelling
  • literary and figurative devices: students examine the words used in various quotes and how they change or impact the tone and mood of the story; students also identify and explain various figurative language devices such as simile, metaphor, personification, hyperbole, idiom, and imagery
  • overall effects: students dissect a theme to see which characters, events, and elements of the setting helped deepen its meaning of it.

Using these literary analysis practice worksheets or interactive notebooks, students practice higher-level critical-thinking skills which include analysis, synthesis, inference, summarizing, and more.

The activities can be used at any point in the text and can be reused at any point, making them even more versatile. They are perfect for stations, group work, or individual independent reading.

9. Teen tech university – analyzing author’s tone


The next literary analysis practice worksheet is included in this activity by Teen tech university, which focuses on teaching students how to analyze the author’s tone in writing.  

Included in the product are

  • an analyzing tone Google Slides presentation (30+ slides)
  • DIDLS charts for strategic tone analysis – they show students how to analyze diction, imagery, details, language, and syntax
  • four poems to analyze – they are all on the same subject but have a different tone
  • teacher’s key for ALL poems and activities
  • tone tweets activity – students analyze 15 real-life tweets with a student handout and a teacher answer key
  • engaging reading passages for practice and application
  • an assessable application activity – a high school graduation where two teens with very different viewpoints
  • a writing application activity – My greatest fear
  • tone words reference sheet (positive, neutral, and negative connotation)
  • annotation activities for active reading and examples
  • teacher notes and pacing guide
  • Google Drive sharing links for all resources AND pdf handouts provided for printing options.

10. Celebrating Secondary – literary analysis of short films


Another fun way to get your students to practice literary analysis is to use short films to introduce, practice, or review the process.  This bundle by Celebrating secondary enables students to practice literary analysis in a low-risk setting by analyzing short films.

Included in the bundle are two products: Literary analysis using Pixar short films and Literary analysis using short films.  Literary topics and skills covered by the activities include:

  • symbolism
  • theme
  • mood
  • characterization
  • imagery
  • connotation
  • social commentary
  • tone
  • flashbacks
  • author’s purpose
  • and many more

The product includes links to Pixar shorts, including Bao, Lou, Lifted, Partly Cloudy, and La Luna.  It also includes links to short films, including Lambs, Nuggets, Snack Attack, Soar, and The Little Shoemaker.

A suggested answer key is included, but because the activities are analysis-based answers will vary.  

11. Miss Fits – “recipe” of a text analysis

The last literary analysis practice worksheet is included in this recipe book project by Miss Fits.

In the CCSS-aligned project, students show their understanding and interpretation of the main ideas and themes of a literary work in a fun and creative way. They will practice citing textual evidence to support their examination of a literary work, including themes and characterization. 

This activity works fantastically with books that have a large emphasis on food, such as 

Lara Esquivel’s Like Water for Chocolate, Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, Sweetbitter by Stephanie Danler, or The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan.  

However, it can also be used with other texts, with the creator saying she’s used it with a class reading George Orwell’s 1984 and another student using it as an alternative project for  The Handmaid’s Tale.

Included in the product are:

  • an assignment sheet explaining the objective and instructions for the project
  • rubric (editable version also included)
  • an imagery tracker
  • a creative symbolism exercise
  • step-by-step recipe worksheet to help students create their projects, and
  • sample entries

Want more literary analysis content?

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