Short Stories: “Ordeal By Cheque”

Goals for the Week:

  1. Follow along with the daily readings of short stories.
  2. Continue working on your Choice Board project
  3. Continue to collaborate with teachers and classmates

Today’s Checklist:

  1. Read “Ordeal By Cheque” by Wuther Crue.
  2. Figure out what is happening in the story
  3. Consider how the story might be remade in 2020

Today’s Lesson!


  • ELAGSE9-10RL1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

Learning Target: 

I can read the nontraditional short story “Ordeal By Cheque” and interpret what happens in the story so that I can understand consider my own nontraditional story.


Have you ever written a check? I know I don’t have to write them very often! Check out this short video of the history of check writing and how to fill one out 🙂

Work Session: 

Your assignment for this unit!

You will have one major assignment for this unit, and you get to choose it! Visit the choice board and select one project to complete about one story. In other words,

Today’s Story:“Ordeal By Cheque” by Wuther Crue.

This story was written in 1932 and originally appeared in the magazine Vanity Fair. It’s a unique story, because instead of being told through words and sentences and paragraphs, the entire story is told through images of checks (or cheques, if you prefer).

As you read through the checks, be sure to look at every little detail. The dates, the handwriting, the “Pay to the order of”, the amounts, and the signatures are all important!!

Consider the following as you read:

  • WHAT IS HAPPENING HERE? (that’s the big one :D)
  • Who are the main characters? Who is the protagonist, if anyone?
  • What do you know about the 1920s and the beginning of the 1930s? What was going on in America at that time?

As you put together the details of the story, think about how a similar story could be told today. That’s going to be our closing session 🙂

Closing Session:

To close today, consider how this story would look if it were written in 2020. Ordeal By Venmo? Ordeal By Cashapp? I don’t know, but how would it differ? How would it be the same? How much of the story would you NEED to change to translate it to 2020?

Consider rewriting part of the story as a modern “Ordeal by GooglePay”. If you do, show off to your teacher! I would love to feature you here on the blog!

Looking Ahead: Tomorrow’s Story

If you want to get ahead on things, here is the story we’re reading tomorrow:


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