Activity Overview

One of the most taught literary terms is irony. In both fiction and in life, irony is all around. Common types of irony are: verbal, situational, and dramatic. It is critical that students distinguish between each type as they read. Asking students to create storyboards that depict each type of irony makes teaching these elements a breeze.

Poe is a master of using irony in his work, and often just one type at a time. Students will enjoy identifying the use of irony in "The Cask of Amontillado.

Verbal Irony

"I shall not die of a cough"

A prime example of verbal irony in "The Cask of Amontillado" is when an unsuspecting Fortunato is being led to his death by his former acquaintance, Montresor. As Montresor lures him into the catacombs, he questions Fortunato about his well-being. Montresor notices Fortunato has a cough, which is growing more severe the farther down the catacombs they travel. He asks if Fortunato would like to turn back. Fortunato replies, “I shall not die of a cough.” Montresor knowingly replies, “True – true.” The audience finds out at the end that this was in fact use of verbal irony. Montresor appeared to mean that the cough was harmless, but what he was also saying was that he planned to kill Fortunato.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Activity", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Student Instructions

Create a storyboard depicting the types of irony used in "The Cask of Amontillado."

  1. Use the template provided by your teacher.
  2. Identify the types of irony used.
  3. Describe the definition of the type of irony.
  4. Illustrate the set up, the dialogue, and the reveal of the irony using important .

Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/L/9-10/3] Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts, to make effective choices for meaning or style, and to comprehend more fully when reading or listening
  • [ELA-Literacy/L/9-10/5] Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings
  • [ELA-Literacy/L/9-10/6] Acquire and use accurately general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, sufficient for reading, writing, speaking, and listening at the college and career readiness level; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression


(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)

Types of Irony Rubric
25 Points
21 Points
17 Points
Try Again
13 Points
Three Types of Irony:
  • Dramatic
  • Verbal
  • Situational
  • Student followed the task for this assignment. They included three different forms of irony, and correctly explained them.
    Student has two forms of irony displayed and correctly explained.
    Student only has two or three types displayed, but not correctly supported
    Work attempts to show irony however, it's unclear or only presents one type.
    Provides Irony Using Direct Quotes
    The student has clearly provided the reader with three different examples of irony and they are clearly explained in an exemplary way.
    Student clearly provided the reader with two examples of irony. However, the examples may not be exemplary.
    Student has identified one or two weak example of irony.
    Student has not identified irony in the story through use of direct quotations.
    Understand the Effect of Irony Through explanation
    Student has provided a clear example of the effect of all three types of irony and explained in great detail.
    Student has provided explanations of the effect of the irony for two or three examples of irony in sufficient detail.
    Student has attempted to provide an explanation of the effect of one or two example(s) of irony in limited detail.
    Student did not provide any explanations of irony from the reading.
    Overall Presentation:
  • Grammar
  • Mechanics
  • Correctness
  • Appeal
  • Student has no errors and the work is commendable.
    Student has very few errors. Good effort has been displayed.
    Student has some mechanical issues; little effort is shown; somewhat appealing; partially incomplete.
    Student has grammar, mechanic or correctness issues that prohibit the understanding of Irony; or incomplete; visually unappealing.

    More Storyboard That Activities

    The Cask of Amontillado

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