Due to their appealing sounds, the use of rhyming makes reading more inviting and enjoyable.

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The Bet

Rhyming Reader’s Theater script version adapted from the short story by Anton Chekhov. A part on every page keeps everyone engaged!

Use with groups of three.

A banker and a young lawyer make a bet with each other about whether the death penalty is better or worse than life in prison. The banker argues that capital punishment is more humane than life imprisonment. To prove his point, the lawyer casts himself into isolation for fifteen years. They agree to a bet of two million rubles that the lawyer cannot spend fifteen years in solitary confinement.

The lawyer spends his time in confinement reading, playing piano, studying, and writing. At the close of the bet, the banker vows to kill the lawyer to avoid his debt. However, the lawyer’s time taught him to despise material goods, and he left his imprisonment five hours before the end of the bet, thus losing the bet and unwittingly saving his own life.

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Companion Texts

Don’t forget these free companion downloads to further the classroom conversation!

“As a teacher of economics, I spend a great deal of time integrating the ‘dismal science’ into the other social sciences. For example, ‘The Necklace’ inspired great discussion on human values vs. monetary cost. Because these stories are presented in rhyme, the students enjoy the interaction, are engaged and are ultimately able to apply universal themes and values even to economics.”

Linda Race, MA

St. Johns County, FL