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Introducing the 2nd Story study guide!

Each season we bring our world-class podcast into classrooms across Chicago by creating dynamic study guides and lesson plans to accompany our socially relevant stories. This year, we are proud to present three stories in conversation with one another. The stories explore community, identity, and the personal journey from where and who we were then to where and who we are now

Just in time for Thanksgiving, our first guide will be published in October 2019. Soul Food investigates family tradition and personal journey as storyteller Jessica Young wonders how to tell her family that turkey is not on her agenda this year.

The second study guide of our 2019/20 season will be published in April 2020 and will accompany stories by Cameron Pentimone and Chris Thoren.

Last season, we have published two study guides in conversation with stories performed with 2nd Story. You can access both guides and access additional resources below.

Listen to the story with your students and then use the study guide (aligned to Illinois High School Learning Standards--though many of the activities can be used for younger or older learners!) and a host of activities to engage around the topic of the story.

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Our Study guides meet the following Illinois Learning Standards

English Language Arts & Literacy


Reading Standard 5: Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure a text, order events within it (e.g., parallel plots), and manipulate time (e.g., pacing, flashbacks) create such effects as mystery, tension, or surprise.
Writing Standard 3: Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
Speaking and Listening Standard 1: Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.

Social Science Civics Standards


SS.CV.1.9-12: Distinguish the rights, roles, powers, and responsibilities of individuals and institutions in the political system.
SS.CV.2.9-12: Evaluate the opportunities and limitations of participation in elections, voting, and electoral process.
SS.CV.8.9-12: Analyze how individuals use and challenge laws to address a variety of public issues.
SS.CV.9.9-12: Evaluate public policies in terms of intended and unintended outcomes and related consequences.

SPONSORS of 2nd Story’s education programming

($5,000 and above)
The Lupo Charitable Fund

Are you an individual or business committed to providing high-quality arts access to students across Chicago? Support 2nd Story's Education Programming by making a tax-deductible gift today!

Please email 2nd Story's Managing Director Lauren Sivak at