Point of View

Point of View

Choice of Narrator Quick Write


Complete a Quick Write.

  • How can an author’s choice of narrator have a significant effect on the story as a whole?

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First Person Narration

Work Time

With a partner, share your thoughts from your homework on the narrator in “The Tell-Tale Heart.”

Use the following questions to guide your conversation.

  • What are the pros and cons of using a first-person narrator?
  • Is the narrator in Poe’s story reliable?
  • How does the reliability of the narrator change your reading of the story?


Work Time

Working independently, read and annotate “Regret” by Kate Chopin.

  • As you read, make a few notes about how the third person point of view shapes your experience as a reader.

Point of View Class Discussion

Work Time

With the whole class, consider the ways point of view is used in “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “Regret.”

Use the following questions to guide your discussion.

  • Can you think of stories other than “The Tell-Tale Heart” that are written in the first person?
    • Why would a writer choose to write a story in the first person?
  • Can you think of a story that is told in the third person?
    • How does that point of view affect the story?
  • How would “The Tell-Tale Heart” have been different if Poe had chosen to employ a third-person narrator?

Tell-Tale Heart Rewrite

Work Time

Reread the first three paragraphs of “The Tell-Tale Heart.”

  • Write a new version of these paragraphs, but this time use a third-person narrator.

Rewrite Partner Share


Read your new version to a partner and have your partner read his/her story to you. As you listen, jot down any ideas or question that occur to you. When you have both finished reading your new version, discuss the following questions.

  • What was lost by writing in the third person?
  • What was gained by the use of third person?
  • Which version do you like best?

When you finish, share your ideas with the class. Use specific evidence from either your own writing or Poe’s to support your points.

Examples of Short Stories


  • For homework, find an example of one American short story written in the first person and one written in the third person.
  • Share the titles and authors of the stories you find with your teacher.

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