Ch 9: Point of View in Literature: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.7.6

About This Chapter

Watch these videos with your students to help them grasp the basics of narrator and point of view analysis in works of literature. Refer to the activity suggestions below for ideas on how to implement these videos in your instruction plan.

Standard: Analyze how an author develops and contrasts the points of view of different characters or narrators in a text. (CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.7.6)

About This Chapter

As your students develop a solid understanding of point of view they will be able to identify who is narrating a given story and why the author chose to tell the story through that person's eyes. They will be able to connect point of view to the overall setting and theme, making inferences about the characters and events based on what the narrator is able to describe. The topics covered in this chapter include:

  • First, second, and third person points of view
  • Point of view in fiction
  • Narrators in literature
  • Narrators in American novels
  • How authors contrast and develop point of view

Students with strong skills in this area will be able to discuss aspects of point of view with ease. They will understand the nuances of objective, limited, and omniscient third person point of view, identifying each in context and describing how the text would have to be adjusted to represent a different point of view. Their analysis of literature will incorporate an evaluation of the author's use of point of view and narration as essential components of the story and windows both to the subjects of the story and to the author's mind. They will also be able to identify and contrast the points of view of different characters within the story to that of the narrator.

How to Use These Lessons in Your Classroom

Use these ideas for ways to introduce these videos to your class.

Who's talking about whom?

After watching the videos defining point of view and narrators, task your students with paying attention to and journaling about point of view and narration in the stories they hear from peers and family throughout the week. Instruct them to note who was talking and what they were talking about and then to draw conclusions about the person speaking based on the stories they tell. Do certain people tend to tell a lot of tales in first person? Do they often talk about others in omniscient third person? What might that say about the person?

Multi-layered narration

Watch the videos on the role of narrators in American novels and how authors develop/contrast point of view in class. Discuss with your students how points of view can evolve or otherwise change within a story and how the story may be told from several points of view. Choosing two or three different books with multiple points of view, extract passages from each of the viewpoints to show how they differ and help to develop the character and story themselves. One text to consider is Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, with its story being developed through the intertwined lives of four sisters.

Writing practice

Have students tell a brief story from their recent experiences from all points of view (including the three variations of third person). Have them choose which sample best supports the story. Encourage students to share their selection in class.

5 Lessons in Chapter 9: Point of View in Literature: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.7.6
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Point of View: First, Second & Third Person

1. Point of View: First, Second & Third Person

Just who is telling this story? In this lesson, we'll look at point of view, or the perspective from which a work is told. We'll review first person, second person and third person points of view.

Point of View in Fiction: First Person, Third Person & More

2. Point of View in Fiction: First Person, Third Person & More

In this lesson, we will explore point of view in fiction. We will learn about several possible points of view (first person, second person, and third person) and practice identifying them.

Narrators in Literature: Types and Definitions

3. Narrators in Literature: Types and Definitions

Learn how point of view, or the angle from which a story is told, impacts the narrative voice of a work of literature. Explore, through examples, how point of view can be limited, objective, or omniscient.

Role of the Narrator in American Novels: Types and Examples

4. Role of the Narrator in American Novels: Types and Examples

Thinking about who is telling the story in a novel, and what he or she might be leaving out, is crucial to understanding that novel. Learn about the various types of points of view in American novels, as well as a few specific, noteworthy narrators, in this lesson.

How an Author Develops & Contrasts Points of View

5. How an Author Develops & Contrasts Points of View

The point of view an author uses to tell a story is of great importance. Adding just one point of view can change a narrative completely. Read on to find out how authors use point of view in writing!

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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