Twisted Literature Guide (2)

Grade Level: 
8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Keywords: 
Choices/Consequences
Civil Society
Courage
Fiction Literature
Integrity
Perseverance
Philanthropic Literature
Book Title: Twisted Author: Laurie Halse Anderson This guide was written by teens for teens to accompany the reading of this "resilience literature." The guide below provides before, during, and after-reading discussion questions to guide reading comprehension and promote dialogue about issues of resilience, trust, independence, family, and community. This guide was written as an assignment in Mrs. Gresham's 11th grade literature class, and includes suggestions for community engagement.

Reading Level: Ages 12-17

This literature guide was created as part of an 11th grade project at Castle Park High School in Indiana. The students chose the book to read and wrote the following questions and project ideas to stimulate thought and action about real issues.

Pre-Reading

Questions:

  1. How would you feel if rumors were being spread about you and what would you do to stop them?
  2. How did you feel the first day back from school after summer break?
  3. Have you ever had to earn your parents trust back after an incident? If so, what was the incident?
  4. What would you do if you had a crush on your worst enemy’s brother/sister?

Connections:

  1. List 4 warning signs of someone about to commit suicide. List 3 things you can do to help prevent it.
  2. Think of a time when you did something horrible. Would you take it back? Why or why not.

During Reading

Questions:

  1. After Tyler spray painted the high school, how did it affect how people view him?
  2. How do you think the incident at the Milbury's house will affect Tyler and Bethany's relationship?
  3. How does Bethany respond to the cake Tyler brings over?
  4. Why was there “a collective gasp” in the lunchroom when Bethany put her foot on Tyler?
  5. What is the significance of the fight Chip and Tyler have in the locker room?
  6. How would you feel if your best friend was dating one of your siblings?
  7. Describe the relationship between Tyler and each of his parents. How do you feel about Tyler’s parents?
  8. Do you think Chip will get mad when he finds out Bethany and Tyler kissed? How will this affect their relationship?
  9. Describe what happened in the car the night of the party. In what ways were Tyler’s actions responsible? In what ways were they not?
  10. Why do you think Tyler was a lead suspect once everyone found out about the photos of Bethany?
  11. Chip and his friends assaulted Tyler. What do you think might happen next?
  12. How does Tyler plan on making a living and where does he want to go after he runs away? Do you think it’s a good plan? What would you do in his situation?
  13. What would you do if a friend told you they are thinking about committing suicide?
  14. How do you think Tyler felt when he found out he was no longer a suspect?
  15. What is the significance to the ending of the book?

 

Connections:

  • In the book Tyler contemplates suicide. Depression and thoughts of suicide are more common among teens than most people think. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is an organization that tries to help. https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

  • In what ways are the students at George Washington High similar to/different from students at your high school?

  • In the movie Sexting in Suburbia, Dina commits suicide after pictures of her get sent amongst the students in her high school. This is similar to the situation Bethany experiences.

  • Today the internet is a gateway for many problems including getting pictures leaked. That happened to Bethany in the book. Here is a link to a recent story: https://www.theindychannel.com/news/local-news/sexting-scandal-rocks-bloomington-high-school

 

After Reading

Questions:

  1. How would you compare the events in this book to where you live?
  2. Have you experienced some of the events or feelings that the main character experienced? How do they compare?
  3. If you could ask the author any question what would it be?

Connections:

  1. The Lifetime movie The Party Never Stops demonstrates a girl who likes to party and accidentally gets a video of her topless posted on the internet. This is similar to Bethany's situation.
  2. The Lifetime movie Betrayed at 17 is about a girl who struggles with suicide after a video of her gets sent around school. This movie demonstrates the struggle with suicide and cyberbullying.
  3. The book Speak also by Laurie Halse Anderson is about a girl who returns to school after being raped the previous summer and has to face her peers who know everything but the truth. This book is about overcoming obstacle like Tyler had to do in the book Twisted.

Activities

  1. Research risk factors and warning signs of suicide and what you can do to help prevent it. Create a PSA to show to the school.
  2. Bring in a guest speaker to talk about bullying and suicide. Raise money to donate to Suicide prevention programs
  3. Clean spray paint/graffiti off of public recreational areas and/or raise money to get the graffiti removed.
  4. Write an essay explaining why Twisted is an appropriate title for the book.