Sunday, December 9, 2018

On Our First Meeting

Imagine getting to read the Canon again for the first time.  You've never heard the name "Moriarty."  You have yet to learn about the dog that did nothing in the night-time.  You are unfamiliar with what constitutes a three pipe problem. 

Would you erase all of your Sherlockian knowledge to relive the first thrill of “Mr. Holmes, they were the footprints of a gigantic hound!”?

No matter your answer, none of us will ever get to relive those first trips into the world of Holmes and Watson.  But I get the next best thing.  Each year, I get to introduce 24 students to some of the most iconic characters in all of literature.  Granted, not every story hits with each kid, and some kids don't care at all.  But the majority of them are into a good story, no matter how old it is. 

And I get to be their tour guide.  We read abridged versions of "The Red-Headed League," "The Blue Carbuncle," "The Speckled Band," and "A Scandal in Bohemia" as well as a graphic novel version of "The Copper Beeches."

So, I'm going to be lazy in this week's blog post.  I'm not going to blather on about whatever Sherlockian topic has been occupying my mind (trust me, there's always plenty).  But instead, I'm going to turn the blog over to comments made by my students about each of these classic stories.  Seeing them through a child's eyes are almost as good as reliving it for yourself!


I could predict that the Red-Headed League was a sham.

The person who got caught ha d really good idea to rob the bank!

It was cool that Duncan Ross and Vincent Spaulding almost escaped.

A weird job leads to a famous criminal.

The villains should have kept the league open while they rob a bank.  Then no one would have
suspected a thing.

I like that Holmes notices all of the details throughout the story


I didn’t like that John Horner got blamed for the crime.

It has pretty good clues that all match up.

Just a simple hat and a goose led to a stolen gem.

There’s a gem inside a goose.  Who on earth does that?

James Ryder wasn’t that smart.

There were so many different obstacles in the story that Sherlock had to deal with to catch the villain.


I like how smart the villain is

This is the best because you don’t know what’s going to happen next.

I like how they used the murder weapon.

I like how scary it was.

It was cool when the snake killed Grimseby Roylott.

Julia’s last word was, “Speckled Band.”  She should have said, “Bye” or “I love you” instead.

I like the villain’s role in this story and how selfish he is.

The surprise at the end was great when I found out what killed Julia Stoner.


It was confusing until Holmes explained it at the end

A dog bit the guy’s face!

I didn’t like that the girl had to cut her hair.

The mystery felt unfinished.

This story is really weird.

I was really sad for the daughter that had been locked up.


I like it because Irene Adler outsmarts Sherlock.

The ending was unexpected.  I was not expecting Irene to leave!

I liked Irene Adler’s note.

This is my favorite because the great Sherlock Holmes lost to a woman.

Irene and Norton get to live happily ever after!

This story tricked me into thinking something else.

1 comment:

  1. These students comments are realy interesting and enjoyable. A journey back to a much earlier time when I first met the stories.