Internal Monologue and Reflection: Day 14

Since we learned about dialogue, the voices around us, yesterday, it’s only natural that today we learn about the voices in our heads.

First, students passed in their writing from last night. Then we did some review.

1. Dialogue notes. Students wrote down on W5 (a sheet of notebook paper) the following dialogue rules:

  1. Put the spoken words and punctuation in quotes. Capitalize the first letter of the quotation. ex: “Hey.”
  2. Add a dialogue tag when needed. Include punctuation before and after the quotation. Before ex: He said, “Hey.” He said, “Hey!” OR After ex: “Hey,” he said. “Hey!” he said.
  3. Start a new paragraph when you switch speakers.

“Hey,” she said, “wait.”

He responded, “Well?”

Students put these notes in their homework folder to study them for a few minutes tonight. Tomorrow we will have a short dialogue punctuation quiz.

2. Internal Monologue and Reflection. These are two ways to reveal to your reader what you are thinking about. In we find analogous techniques in film, in which a voiceover is recorded and laid over the image. Writers can do this, too, with words. Students received L5: Internal Monologue Handout. We took notes and watched examples from this website: Or you can get the notes here:

Internal Monologue definition: The thoughts that are going through a character’s mind during the action of the story. Internal monologue is always in present tense. In writing, an internal monologue is shown in italics. Often shows confusion or tension in the moment.

Click here to watch an example from Glee. Watch 0:20-0:45

Reflection definition: The act of reflecting on what your experiences mean; philosophizing about the big picture. Reflection is in past tense.

Click here to watch a very different voice-over, much more philosophizing, from The Wonder Years. Watch from 0:45 – 3:25

Notice how sure this narrator sounds in comparison to the insecurity of the Glee narrator?

3. Practice. Students wrote their own internal monologue and reflection on the back of their handout. They needed to make the internal monologue in the moment, confused, and tense and make their reflection philosophical and moralizing.

HW: Honors – write another scene from your memoir using imagery, dialogue, and/or characterization.

Everyone – Study W5 for your dialogue quiz tomorrow.