A flashback offers a unique way for an author to present the events of a story. It can add drama or suspense, or fill the reader in on important information about characters, relationships, motivations, perspective, and events. It often reveals the source of a current conflict, or it can provide the reader with a deeper understanding of the motivations of a villain. Many well-known works of literature begin their tales at the end and work their way back to the beginning. Other stories begin in medias res (in the middle of things) and fill in the rest of the narrative with flashbacks before moving forward.
Notable Examples of Flashback in Literature
To Kill A Mockingbird: the entire novel is told as a flashback to Scout at aged 6-9 years old from her perspective as an adult
A Separate Peace: the entire novel is told as a flashback when Gene visits the Devon School 15 years later
Catcher in the Rye: the novel is told as a flashback from Holden’s perspective in a rest home a year after his mental breakdown
The Things They Carried: this memoir is told as a flashback, and there are several flashbacks within the memoir to other events
“The Scarlet Ibis”: this story is told from the perspective of the narrator as an adult, looking back on the short time he had as a child with his brother, Doodle
Thirteen Reasons Why: this novel uses several flashbacks to reveal past events that led Hannah to commit suicide
The illustrated guide storyboards have easily digestible information with a visual to stimulate understanding and retention.
Storyboard That is passionate about student agency, and we want everyone to be storytellers. Storyboards provide an excellent medium to showcase what students have learned, and to teach to others.
Use these illustrated guides as a springboard for individual and class-wide projects!
Assign a term/person/event to each student to complete their own storyboard
Create your own illustrated guide of a topic you are studying
Create an illustrated guide to the people in your class or school
Post storyboards to class and school social media channels
Copy and edit these storyboards and use as references or visuals