2/24/17 Skill Practice

Today I will be working on reading skills in opened. The videos I watched were on, context, literary allusions, complex character in literature, and character analysis. These are the notes I took:


Descriptions: the green-feathered macaw

Synonyms: the soft and supple leather

Antonyms: Angie is sweet; she doesn’t have a malevolent bone in her body

Definitions: The echidna, an egg-laying mammal native

Tone: positive, negative, happy, scared

Vocabulary in Context:

  • The parts of a written or spoken statement that precede or follow a specified or passage and can influence its meaning or effect
  • The set of circumstances or facts that surround a particular event, situation, etc.
  • Words around other words that help determine the meaning

Steps for guessing meaning of unknown words:

  1. Look at the word
  2. Look at the sentence
  3. Look at the relationship between the sentence containing the unknown word and other sentences
  4. Guess the meaning of the unknown word
  5. Check that your guess is correct


Literary Allusions

An indirect reference to a person, place, or event found in another piece of literature

Allusions Offer a New Way of Seeing:

  • Engage the reader with an “inside joke”
  • Make meaningful connections with other pieces of literature
  • Provide new and insightful understanding


Complex Character in Literature

A complex character is a character that has more than one aspect to their personality. This type of character is often portrayed as a conflicted and contradictory person. They are usually realistic and multifaceted.

Character’s Motivation:

  • A character’s motivation is that which propels them, their personality. It is why the character acts the way they do. It is an answer to the question, “WHy?” It is what keeps them going.

Kinds of Motivation:

  • The character can have a goal, he could want glory, be greedy, looking for knowledge, redemption, vengeance or just a wanderer. He could be a psychopath, trying to shrug responsibility, be a teacher or a mentor or a thrillseeker.


  • The development of a complex character can come from its motivations. Let’s take as an example of the character that had to choose between stealing to feed his family and watching them starve.


  • Even a story with a premise of loneliness usually has some form of relationship, even if it’s only animal companionship, such as a dog.
  • One of the most interesting insights of character relationships is how a character acts differently around other characters.

Supporting Characters:

  • The supporting characters in a story usually have effect on the main characters. They are the ones who can cause the conflict and cause change.


Complex Character’s Role

  • A plot is the main story idea. It is the pattern of events that makes up the story. The decisions the complex character makes will generally advance the plot.


  • Without complex characters, characters would all be simple and bland and would not contribute anything to the plot or theme. Imagine how boring a story would be with no conflict.

Character Analysis

Physical Traits:

  • eye/hair color
  • height/weight
  • clothing

Thoughts, Feelings, Attitudes

  • Ideas about a certain topic
  • Ideas about a certain character


  • Reasons for behaving a certain way
  • Mystery novel



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