Fiction and Nonfiction Greyling My Heart is in the Highlands by Jane Yolen

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Fiction and Nonfiction Greyling My Heart is in the Highlands by Jane Yolen. Review. Fiction. A form of writing that tells a story about made-up characters and events. Features of Fiction. people or animals called characters a group of events called the plot
Fiction and Nonfiction Greyling My Heart is in the Highlands by Jane Yolen

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Fiction and NonfictionGreyling My Heart is in the Highlands by Jane Yolen


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  • A form of writing that tells a story about made-up characters and events.

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Features of Fiction

  • people or animals called characters

  • a group of events called the plot

  • a time and place called setting

  • someone called the narrator who tells the story

  • a message or idea about life called a theme

  • a point of view

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Point of View

  • First-person point of view means that the narrator is part of the story.

    • The narrator uses the word I to tell what happened.

  • Third-person point of view means that the narrator is not part of the story.

    • This narrator uses the words he and she to tell what happened to others.

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Examples of Fiction

  • Novel

    • long, with many chapters

  • Novella

    • shorter than a novel but longer than a short story

  • Short story

    • brief enough to be read in one sitting

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  • Writing that gives information or states the author’s opinion about a subject.

“I Have a Dream” Speech


Dr. Martin Luther King

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Features of Nonfiction

  • about real people, events, or ideas

  • Gives information from the author’s perspective, or the way the author sees things

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Examples of Nonfiction

  • Biography

    • the story of a person’s life told by someone else

  • Autobiography

    • the story of the author’s life

  • Letter

    • Written message from one person to another to share information, thoughts, or feelings

  • Journal or diary

    • Written record of daily events and of the writer’s thoughts and feelings

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Examples of Nonfiction

  • Essay

    • a brief written work that tells the author’s opinion

  • Informational Text

    • written work that gives information

      • Textbooks, applications, instructions, manuals

  • Speech

    • written work meant to be spoken to an audience

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From what point of view is “Greyling” told from? How do you know?

  • The story is told from third-person point of view because the narrator is not a character in the story.

  • The narrator uses the words they, their, she, and he.

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2. Describe the setting of “Greyling.”

  • A town or village by the sea.

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3. What is the conflict or problem that describes why the fisherman and his wife are sad at the beginning of the story?

  • They are sad because they have no children.

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4. What changes to make the fisherman and his wife happy?

  • They are happy now because they have a child.

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5. Describe Greyling.

  • Greyling is a selchie.

    He is human on land but a seal in the sea.

  • He has grey eyes and silvery grey hair.

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6. Why doesn’t the fisherman’s wife want Greyling to go in the sea?

  • She fears Greyling will turn back into a seal and leave her forever.

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7. Why does Greyling have a longing in his heart when he looks out to the sea?

  • He wants to return to the sea but doesn’t understand why.

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8. Why does Greyling dive into the ocean?

  • He dives into the ocean to save his father.

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9. How did the fisherman and his wife feel about Greyling returning to the sea? What does their conversation at the end of the story reveal?

  • The fisherman and his wife were sad but they understood that it was for the best.

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10. Why does Greyling come back once a year?

  • He returns to visit his parents.

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11. What is the theme or message of “Greyling”?

  • The lesson to be learned is that although parents may love their children, they will eventually have to let them go.

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12. What does the fisherman mean when he says that Greyling has “gone where his heart calls”?

  • Greyling has gone back to the sea. He is a selchie that was born at sea. He longs to be in the water. The sea is where he belongs and where he will be happiest.

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13. Can “Greyling” be described as fiction or nonfiction? What details support this?

  • “Greyling” is fiction. The writing starts as “Once on a time...”, Greyling transforms from a seal pup to a baby, Greyling transforms back into a seal, the writing tells a story about made-up characters and events, there is a setting, a narrator tells a story, and there is a theme or life lesson.

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14. How does the author describe the Highlands?

  • The Highlands are in Scotland with hills and cottages in high, small country towns.

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15. Where does the author get her real-life details from that she uses in her stories?

  • She takes them from family and friends.

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16. Describe the cottages.

  • White-washed stone cottages made with stones that have been reused from older buildings.

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17. What does Yolen describe as “stones from the past” to build her stories?

  • She uses her memories reshaping them into something new.

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18. What is the purpose of “My Heart is in the Highlands”?

  • She uses stone cottages as a comparison for how memories are reused like the stones to build stories.

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19. What does the author mean by “All fiction uses memory”?

  • Memories are often used by authors from their own lives in creating fictional stories.

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20. What warning does the author give?

  • “Get to know me well and you will most certainly find yourself enshrined in one of my books.”

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21. Can “My Heart is in the Highlands” be described as fiction or nonfiction?

  • This selection is nonfiction. It is a speech that explains the author’s point of view about the place she was visiting.

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