Name: ________________________________________
“Summer Rituals” by Ray Bradbury
Part 1: While Reading
Please read the text and ANNOTATE while you read. Annotating means marking up the text, NOT
just underlining or highlighting.
What do I annotate?
 Words/phrases/sentences that stand out—they are wonderfully written, they are odd, you
like it but you don’t know why, or you respond negatively to it. Make a note of what moves
you about them!
 Connections you see in the writing: is the author repeatedly making references to his love of
pound cake? Are there lots of words that relate to the same topic, such as sports, or violence,
time or nature? Is he constantly bringing up sounds, smells, etc. ANY patterns you might see
emerging, make note.
 When you recognize a theme or message—jot it down.
 Make note of how a piece starts and how it begins—what is the author doing to engage your
interest, and what is the author leaving you with?
 Make a note of anything that confuses you and WHY it’s confusing.
 What rhetorical or literary devices is the author using? Metaphor, imagery, persuasion,
dialogue, flashback, slang, etc. Point them out when you see them, even if you don’t know
WHY they’re being used—the “WHY” will become apparent later. That’s why you’re
annotating—to see the BIGGER PICTURE.
This is not an exhaustive list, but it’s a solid start. From now on, it’s the rule—you annotate
EVERYTHING you read in here.
Part II: Post-Reading
Now that your text is metaphorically ripped apart, please answer the following (you will have to
share and do some writing on the board):
1. How did the conversation blend with the surroundings in Bradbury’s description?
2. Some of the sentences are very long and involved, whereas others are quite short. What
effects do these changes in sentence length have on you as a reader? Give a specific example
of a shift in length from one sentence to another and explain its effect.
3. This essay is filled with descriptive language, similes, and metaphors; you should have made
several annotations about this! Write about one of the examples that most stands out to
you—why is it effective, what do you like about it, why does it stand out? Etc.
4. What do you think the purpose of this essay is?
Also be prepared to talk about the beginning and ending of the essay and any patterns you saw
emerge in your annotations =)
Part III: Post-Post Reading
Revisit our previous conversation about “good” writing. How does Bradbury’s writing compare to
our ideas of “good” writing? Does he fit the category? Are there modifications, additions, deletions,
etc. that we should make to our ideas?
Part IV: Post-Post-Post Reading
Based on our conversation, reading, and writing today, please bring in a piece of writing that you
believe meets—shall we say, exceeds?—the standards we set for “good” writing. You DO NOT
have to write anything for this assignment, but you will have to share an excerpt from whatever you
bring in and justify your choice to the class. Please have this printed out or handy before class
begins—preparedness is a virtue!!!