Foreshadowing and flashback

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Common core standards

Related articles

Teaching strategies

Foreshadowing and flashback are two literary devices that are often taught together.

Graphic organizers

  • Prediction chart from ReadWriteThink has students list their predictions and then state if they were right.

Classroom activities


  • NY Learns Making Predictions and Discovering Foreshadow is a well developed 8th grade lesson plan on predictions and foreshadowing. It has lots of resources attached-- some are SMART board files. Even if you don't have one, the attached prediction paragraph rubric is still pretty good.

  • Prediction Cards from Scholastic is another mini-lesson that has students create prediction cards about a story to share with their peers. Their peers then make predictions about the story from the information given on the cards and discover if they were right.

  • Foreshadowing is barely even a mini-lesson-- it's a handout to give groups of students when they begin to read a story telling them what to look for as they read and some guiding questions.


  • Flashback is a brief, middle school lesson on flashback with passages for students to read and discussion questions.

Foreshadowing and flashback

Cyber games and activities

Harcourt Predictions Grade 3 has students read short passages and predict what will happen next. Foreshadowing is not explicitly mentioned in the game.
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Ed Place Flashbacks is an interactive worksheet that guides students through the steps of creating their own stories with flashbacks.

iPad apps

Free worksheets


  • Teach-nology Prediction has students read short, simple paragraphs and make a prediction about what will happen next. The questions do not specifically address foreshadowing.

  • Foggy Figures from Superteacher is a two page story with numerous questions (multiple choice and open ended) about foreshadowing within the story. The text is at a mid to upper elementary level.


Foreshadowing and flashbacks

  • McGraw Hill has an entire workbook on literary elements online-- foreshadowing is on page 15 and flashback on page 17

At home


Foreshadowing 9.JPG
| Foreshadowing in Films is a nine minute video montage that explains foreshadowing. If you skip the narration and watch only the video clips, it would work well in a lesson. The first 30 seconds are jaws, 2:29 is a clip from Star Wars, 3:10 in is a clip from Mulan, 3:54 is a clip from Cinderella, and 6:53 is a clip from Aladdin. Each clip is under 30 seconds and then has a discussion of what was foreshadowed.
Foreshadowing twilight.JPG
| Flashbacks in Twilight is a YouTube clip from Twilight that has great examples of flashbacks. Okay—at least clear examples.

Helpful links

Product reviews

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