Students in eighth grade English are currently reading and annotating John Steinbeck’s gripping novel Of Mice and Men. Throughout the school year, our class has focused on elements of literature that are important to interpreting works of fiction, such as setting, character, conflict, climax, and resolution. These are the items students are annotating while they read. Each student has been given his or her own personal copy to annotate–or take notes in–as he or she reads, and so far the result is that students are showing ownership of their work. Class discussions have been rich in ideas, textual support, analysis, and inferential thinking. In all, students are continuing to develop their skills as active readers.