Before We Begin

Before We Begin

Prereading is a vital skill to learn. It helps us readers begin to make the connections between what we know and what we are going to learn. It prepares our brains for the new information that is about to be taken in.  It can consist of various activities including, but not limited to, skimming, looking at the table of contents or headings, reading summaries or conclusions, and considering character lists and study questions.

This week, on the Writer’s Block Forum, my fellow read along team members and I will begin reading a new novel — Emma. To be completely honest, I am not as familiar with this novel as some of Miss Austen’s other works, so I am looking forward to being reintroduced to the story. In preparation for this reading of the novel, I did a little bit of internet searching for some items that might help us all prepare for the read along — whether you are an Emma expert or a novice, I think you will find them enjoyable.  And after all, isn’t that what reading is supposed to be about — enjoyment?

So, let’s have some fun preparing for the reading…


Emma A Little DisguiseEmma's situation
If you would like to read explanations of these two quotes, you can find them here: SparkNotes: Emma: Important Quotes Explaned
This site also has notes on various chapters as well as character lists and analaysis and information about themes, motifs, and symbols.







Would you like to test the knowledge you already possess about Emma? Here are two quizzes where you can do just that–


Emma Quizzes 1 Copy of Emma Quizzes 2






You could also view some


Perhaps a movie trailer

Or a video book review

Or a music video to “set the mood” 🙂

Or a clip from a movie adaptation or two

Or spend some time watching a modern adaptation presented in short (entertaining) clips

BUT, of course, no read along can be conducted without at least one copy of the novel to be read.


Click the picture to be taken to the audio recording on LibriVox

Several audio versions can be found for free on, or if you prefer to purchase one, has several versions as well.

For text versions, has several print and ebook options including the free one below. There are also free versions of the text online and some of these sites, such as, are fabulous sources of additional information as well.

emma capture

Personally, I like to both read and listen, and to make the listening even more enjoyable, I like to tweet my thoughts as I go along. If you are interested in reading those thoughts and sharing your own, you can search (and use) #AuAuReadAlong.  You could also follow me on Twitter. And don’t forget to check out the discussion on the Writer’s Block Forum.  Hope to see you there!

— Leenie

covers 2 (1)

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7 Responses to Before We Begin

  1. I agree, 2009 Emma is very good. I also like the BBC adaptation from the 70’s. My favorite Mr. Woodhouse! Fun post, Leenie! Definitely in the mood!

  2. These pre-reading activities definitely are putting me in the mood to revisit “Emma.” I enjoy each of the adaptations you linked above, but the 2009 version is my favorite. I also liked “Emma Approved” …but although it comes in short segments, it is very hard not to binge watch. I like that it has a crossover character from the LBD. Looks like some re-watching may be in my future. 🙂

    • Yay! Glad they are working to tempt you into revisiting Emma. 🙂 I have not watched the full 2009 adaptation, but what I saw of it, I loved! I find a copy and take the time to watch the full thing! I have been watching Emma Approved while doing laundry and dishes (it makes the chore more enjoyable, and I don’t feel like I “wasting time” binge watching videos — so a win, win in my book 😉 )

      • Definitely worth your time to watch Emma 2009. I think they really chose the actors well. A fun watch!

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