On Lit Paper 1 Section B (19th Century) Question Stems

19th century texts.png

AQA have said that they will not print any more sample assessment material for the new Literature GCSE. Although I can understand why, it does present us with the challenge of generating questions for our students. To help with this, I’ve created some question stems that can be adapted to create example questions. You can find my Paper 1 Section A (Shakespeare) Question Stems here.

You might want to use the question stems to create your own example questions by filling in the blanks or you may want to give them to your students so that they can write their own (finding relevant extracts from the novel to go with their question).

Regularly writing full essays is key to developing an analytical voice and developing strategies for thinking/writing in timed conditions. However, when there’s a bank of questions to choose from, students can gain a lot from engaging with example questions in a variety of ways.

How you might use these Questions Stems:

  • Use a lesson to do timed plans. Revisit an extract from the novel as a class and then display a question. Give students ten minutes to plan their response (you may want to model one with them first). Using the same extract, display another question and so on. The idea is to get students thinking more quickly and writing decent plans quickly.
  • When students have planned a response, get them to talk through their essay with a peer. What points would they make? How would they support them? How would they analyse the quotations they’ve selected? What links would they make to context? In discussion with their peer they can develop their arguments and perhaps consider alternative interpretations.
  • Plan a response together and then challenge the whole class to write the best introduction or one of the main paragraphs.
  • Show students a question without an extract. Which extract would be most useful to answering this question?
  • Show students an extract and get them to write their own question using the question stems. How many different questions did the class generate?

The Question Stems:

1.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, how does [author] present [character name] as _______?

Write about:

  • how [author] presents [character name] in this extract
  • how [author] presents [character name] as ______ in the novel as a whole

2.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, how does [author] create suspense?

Write about:
• how [author] creates suspense in this extract
• how [author] creates suspense in the novel as a whole

3.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, write about how [author] presents the [adjective] relationship between [character name] and [character name].

Write about:

  • how [author] presents the [adjective] relationship in this extract
  • how [author] presents the [adjective] relationship between [character name] and [character name] in the novel as a whole

4.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, write about how [author] presents [theme].

Write about:
• how [author] presents [theme] in this extract
• how [author] presents [theme] in the novel as a whole

5.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, write about how [author] creates tension.

Write about:
• how [author] creates tension in this extract
• how [author] creates tension in the novel as a whole

6.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, write about how [author] presents attitudes towards [group of people].

Write about:
• how [author] presents attitudes towards [group of people] in this extract
• how [author] presents attitudes towards [group of people] in the novel as a whole

7.

Read the following extract from chapter [number] and then answer the question that follows.

In this extract [one sentence summary].

[INSERT EXTRACT]

Starting with this extract, explore how [author] creates a sense of mystery.

Write about:
• how [author] creates a sense of mystery in this extract
• how [author] creates a sense of mystery in the novel as a whole

You might also be interested in my post on encouraging students to write essays people actually want to read here.

Link to Google Drive with Paper 2 Section A Question Stems: here.

 

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