Today we’re going to watch the awesomeness that is The Legend of Sleepy Hollow! This is a really cool short story that has been adapted into film many times over the years, including a Disney version and a really horrid Johnny Depp version. But today we’re reading the original short story, which you can find online here, and we’re watching an awesome old-school Disney version, which you can download and watch for yourself right here.
But before we do the video, we’re going to read the legend itself, and answer a few questions. I’ll give you guys most of the class to work on this – yes, it is going to be graded – and then with half an hour left to go we’ll swap over to the video. If you’re working from home, here are the questions we’re doing!
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow Questions
Summarizing. Choose the best phrase to complete each sentence. Then write the complete statements on your paper.
1. Ichabod often got to spend time with Katrina because _____ (he helped her with her spelling, she took singing lessons from him, he was very good looking).
2. When Ichabod left the Van Tassels’ party, he was very sad because _____ (he thought parties shouldn’t end, something had gone wrong between him and Katrina, Brom Bones had threatened him).
3. After the party, Ichabod met what he thought was the Headless Horseman, and Ichabod _____ (disappeared, died of fright, threw a pumpkin at the rider).
Interpreting. Write the answer to each question on your paper.
1. What was one possible explanation for why the people of Sleepy Hollow acted as if they were in a dream?
2. What does the behavior of Katrina Van Tassel tell you about her?
3. What probably really happened to Ichabod on his way home from the Van Tassels’ party?
For Thinking and Discussing. What were some of the humorous details that Washington Irving included in his supernatural story, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”?
Point of View. “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” like many other legends, is told from the third-person point of view. This “all knowing” or omniscient point of view allows the story teller to include everything he or she wants the reader or listener to know, and to be objective as possible.
Here are some statements from, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” On your paper, identify those that would not have been included if Ichabod himself had been telling the story.
1. “His feet looked as big as shovels. His head was small, and flat on top.”
2. “He was thought to know more than most of the men around, and to be more of a gentleman.”
3. “She was just 18, round and red-checked and pretty. She dressed to show off her beauty.”
4. “From the moment Ichabod saw the Van Tassel farm, his peace of mind was over.”
5. “Brom…liked to dash through the valley on horses at midnight.”
6. “Next morning, the old horse was found eating grass at his mater’s gate.”
Imagine that you are Ichabod Crane. Write a paragraph using the first-person point of view o explain your disappearance.