A Series of Unfortunate Events #3: The Wide Window

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Dear Reader,

If you have not read anything about the Baudelaire orphans, then before you read even one more sentence, you should know this: Violet, Klaus, and Sunny are kindhearted and quick–witted, but their lives, I am sorry to say, are filled with bad luck and misery. All of the stories about these three children are unhappy and wretched, and this one may be the worst of them all.If you haven't got the stomach for a story that includes a hurricane, a signalling device, hungry leeches, cold cucumber soup, a horrible villain, and a doll named Pretty Penny, then this book will probably fill you with despair.I will continue to record these tragic tales, for that is what I do. You, however, should decide for yourself whether you can possibly endure this miserable story.

With all due respect,

Lemony Snicket

Ages 10+

Curriculet Details
27 Questions
25 Annotations
3 Quizzes

Designed for students in 7th grade, this free digital curriculum contains annotations explaining Alexander the Great, refraction of light, and character development. It also contains interactive videos that support comprehension, such as videos about irony and foreshadowing. Over the course of the book, students will answer Common Core questions and quizzes related to the subjects of diction, structure, and character development. This free online unit will increase student engagement while building reading comprehension.

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Here is a map that includes all of the important spots in the book series.  (This annotation contains an image)
The imagery in A Series of Unfortunate Events is very important to the story. Here is a short video about imagery. (This annotation contains a video)
How does the author's imagery make the lake look like to you?  


The orphans are getting to know their aunt. We are learning about her character as they are. Here is a short video about how authors develop their characters. (This annotation contains a video)
How would you describe Aunt Josephine to someone who has not read about her? 
The gifts the orphans get are never suitable for them. This makes the gifts ironic. Here is a short video about irony. (This annotation contains a video)
What gifts have the children been given thus far in the book? 
This type of window is called a bay window. It is called this because the window bows (or bays) out from the square designs typically used in houses. (This annotation contains an image)
What type of definitions does the narrator give when describing the words he uses to the reader?   


Each book in the Lemony Snicket series has both static and dynamic characters. Here is a short video to help you understand the difference.  (This annotation contains a video)
Is Klaus a static or a dynamic character? 
The scene at the market is shown a bit differently in the movie version of "A Series of Unfortunate Events." Take a look. (This annotation contains a video)
What theme from A Series of Unfortunate Events books is shown in the highlighted passage? 
The name Count Olaf has chosen as part of his disguise is poignant. The word "sham" means "to falsely present something as the truth."  (This annotation contains an image)
How is the scene at the marketplace different in the text than it was in the film version?  


Since Aunt Josephine refuses to believe the orphans about Captain Sham, what is likely to be the outcome of his presence in town?  
What does the word "solemnly" mean as it is used in this sentence?  
Quiz 1 


The story of the venus flytrap is an extended metaphor. Here is a video about metaphor. (This annotation contains a video)
What type of character was Aunt Josephine? 


Forgery is the process of making, adapting, or imitating objects, statistics, or documents with the intent to deceive. When the object forged is a record or document it is often called a false document.  (This annotation contains an image)
How would you describe Mr. Poe to someone who hasn't read about him? Is he a static or dynamic character? 
Which character is more likely to be "relieved" that the adoption can be sorted quickly?  
This section of the chapter is foreshadowing what happens in the next chapter. (This annotation contains a video)


What is this paragraph doing in literary terms?  
Captain Sham is compared to a chameleon in this section. Watch the video below to see a chameleon change colors.  (This annotation contains a video)
A food allergy can negatively affect your health. The first time you eat the offending food, your immune system creates disease-fighting antibodies. When you eat the food again, your body treats it as a foreign invader and attempts to get rid of it by releasing a substance called histamine.  (This annotation contains an image)
What is the final paragraph of this chapter doing in literary terms?  


What kind of character is Klaus?  
Stilt houses are houses raised on piles over the surface of the soil or a body of water. Stilt houses are built primarily as a protection against flooding.  (This annotation contains an image)
Quiz 2 


Damocles Dock is also named rather poignantly. Damocles is a figure in a moral anecdote commonly referred to as "the Sword of Damocles." The moral of the story is that with great fortune and power come also great peril and anxiety. 
The highlighted sentence is an example of what literary term?  
The orphans are often in conflict. Here is a short video that explains the difference between internal and external conflict. (This annotation contains a video)
What kind of conflict is Klaus having based on the highlighted sentence?  


A tiller or till is a lever attached to a rudder post of a boat that provides leverage for the helmsman to turn the rudder.  (This annotation contains an image)
When Violet says "looking at the lake through her eyes," what does she mean? 
The phrase highlighted is an example of what literary term? 
Aunt Josephine lacks empathy and compassion for others. She also has so many phobias about being hurt she cannot realize when she is hurting others.  
What is the highlighted passage in literary terms? 


The author has personified leeches in this passage. Here is a short video that explains personification. (This annotation contains a video)
What is the highlighted sentence an example of in literary terms? 
The term Wunderkind (from German: “wonder child”) is sometimes used as a synonym for prodigy.  (This annotation contains an image)
What is the purpose of this paragraph to the story? 
Convergence and refraction of light allows us to know where light will be focused when passing through a lens. As a ray of light enters a lens, it is refracted; and as the same ray of light exits the lens, it is refracted again. The net effect of the refraction of light at these two boundaries is that the light ray has changed directions. To learn more about refraction, visit the Physics Classroom website.  (This annotation contains a link)
This sentence is an example of what literary term? 


Leeches are not villainous or as plotting as recorded in this story. Real leeches are segmented worms that have been used in medicine to reattach body parts and during reconstructive and plastic surgeries.  (This annotation contains an image)
What traits of Aunt Josephine's make her an unlikable character? 
Here is the same scene from the movie version of A Series of Unfortunate Events. (This annotation contains a video)
What was different in the movie version of the previous scene and the one in the story?  
What central idea does the highlighted passage confirm? 
Alexander the Great was a king of the Greek kingdom of Macedon. By the age of thirty, he had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world--stretching from Greece to Egypt and into present-day Pakistan. He was undefeated in battle and is considered one of history's most successful commanders.  (This annotation contains an image)


Mr. Poe has a very stringent way of dealing with the children. Often he says things and chooses paths that make the children feel indignant. He has not changed in any way since his appearance in the first book, despite the fact that Count Olaf has now tried to kill the children 3 times. 
Is Mr. Poe a static or dynamic character?  
Quiz 3