Thirteen Reasons Why is a novel written by Jay Asher first published in 2007 and recently made into a 2017 television series by Netflix. It tells the story of a teenager, Clay Jensen, who has received a package containing 7 audio cassettes recorded by Hannah Baker explaining why she committed suicide and the details of the events that led her to that point. While both the book and the TV series have met with a fair amount of controversy over its graphic content and depiction of suicide, 13RW allows the reader or viewer insight into the thoughts and feelings of someone dealing with their own angst and the intentional – or sometimes unintentional – cruelty of their peers. Hannah’s experience, either in part or in whole, is something that deserves attention as to how our actions can have immediate or far-reaching consequences in the lives of others.
Careful attention, self-reflection and empathetic reading of this book will provide an enriching learning experience that only literature can bring. To that end, the collection of activities and resources below are designed to aid in the appreciation of the book and ourselves. When reading the book or watching the series as the events and conflicts unfold, remember these questions:
How would I actually handle this situation? What would I do better?
If at any time you feel you need help with the content of this novel or series, remember it is always available, and you are NEVER ALONE. Whether it is about your or a friend, you can always talk to any of your teachers or healthcare professionals.
We read to know we're not alone, we write to make sure others aren't.
|This booklet is designed for intermediate (and higher) English students to help improve the level of English while reading the book and to obtain a deeper understanding of the novel through active and targeted reading.The Comprehension guide will help your understanding while you read the book. After each chapter respond to the corresponding questions. But don't worry, if you can't get a question the first time, just use the page given page numbers to find the answer back in the text.|
Here are some offsite multimedia English learning activities based on the themes in 13 Reasons Why.
|Here is a list of deeper activities that you can do after you've read the book. If you are studying in an Language Resource Center and keep a work file or journal of your work, these are perfect. This is also good for homework. |
14 Questions for Thirteen Reasons Why
Here is a list of discussion questions for you to explore when you have finished reading the book.
Take some time and reflect on each question giving as honest a response as you can.
Here you can listen to Hannah's recorded messages in the same way that Clay heard them in the book.
Mix-tapes were a way of sending a special unique message to a friend or loved one via music and because of the amount of time and dedication needed to create that “perfect” tape the gift was even more meaningful.
But it seems it has become a lost art. Or has it? In modern literature, it seems to be making a comeback, either because of the nostalgia of the author or because of the uniqueness of its ability to convey a message greater than the sum of its physical parts.
Ironically, the very advancements in technology that killed the audio cassette tape, have also regenerated its popularity and provided us with new ways to create them.
We can now make virtual mix-tapes easily and in less time thanks to the internet.
Why not give it a try.
Here's a journal friendly mix-tape activity that you can use for your English learning journal. Follow the directions on the activity sheet and give it to your teacher for credit.