National Endowment for the Arts - The Big Read
Sun, Stone, and Shadows

Sun, Stone, and Shadows

by Jorge F. Hernández

The temples and gods of pre-Columbian Mexico are a pile of ruins, but the spirit that breathed life into that world has not disappeared… Being a Mexican writer means listening to the voice of that present, that presence.

Temple of El Castillo in Chichen Itza, Yucatan, Mexico (Copyright Mark Segal/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Schedule/Lesson Plans

This is a suggested teaching schedule for a 10 class study of Sun, Stone, and Shadows: 20 Great Mexican Short Stories. Lesson plans and handouts can be downloaded individually by clicking on the name of the file in the schedule below. Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view these files.

Audio Guide CDs are available only for the communities participating in The Big Read. If your community is participating, contact the lead community organization to receive a free Audio Guide CD. Non-participating communities can listen to the full audio online.

Day One
Focus: Reading Short Fiction
Day One Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Two
"Cooking Lesson" by Rosario Castellanos
Focus: Realism
Day Two Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Three
"Cooking Lesson" by Rosario Castellanos
Focus: Narrative and Point of View
Day Three Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Four
"Tell Them Not to Kill Me!" by Juan Rulfo
Focus: Character Development
Day Four Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Five
"Tell Them Not to Kill Me!" by Juan Rulfo
Focus: Plot
Day Five Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Six
"My Life with the Wave" by Octavio Paz
Focus: Surrealism
Day Six Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Seven
"My Life with the Wave" by Octavio Paz
Focus: Metaphor
Day Seven Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Eight
"Chac-Mool" by Carlos Fuentes
Focus: Epistolary Writing
Day Eight Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Nine
"Chac-Mool" by Carlos Fuentes
Focus: Symbolism
Day Nine Lesson Plan [PDF]

Day Ten
Focus: What Makes a Short Story Great?
Day Ten Lesson Plan [PDF]


Handout 1: Short Fiction [PDF]
Handout 2: Reader-Response Criticism [PDF]
Handout 3: Octavio Paz's "My Life with the Wave" — An Allegory of the Creative Process, by Diane Thiel [PDF]

Download all ten lesson plans and handouts [.zip]

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