A Guide to Twilight Saga Educational Materials (& a contest)

It’s no secret that we love combining The Twilight Saga with reading & education — after all, that’s how Novel Novice Twilight got it’s start! And these days, there is an ever-growing number of educational books related to The Twilight Saga. Today, we’re bringing you a guide to the best of those materials — and offering you a chance to win some of them! Check out the guide below, and scroll down for details on the contest!

Defining Twilight, Defining New Moon & Defining Eclipse

Brian Leaf is a guru when it comes to preparing for standardized tests like the SAT & ACT — and he’s combined his expertise with everything fans love about Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight Saga in his series of vocabulary study books: Defining Twilight, Defining New Moon, Defining Eclipse and coming this Fall, Defining Breaking Dawn.

Each book combines words taken directly from Meyer’s books with definitions and exercises meant to help you learn words and prepare for tests like the SAT & ACT.

The best part of these books? Brian Leaf has actually made studying fun! We’re huge fans of these books, and we highly recommend them for anyone preparing for the SAT/ACT — or anyone who simply wants to brush up on some words, or expand your vocabulary skills.

Not only are these books perfect for SAT/ACT prep — but since it’s the summer, these are also great ways to brush-up on your vocab skills while school’s out. Plus, you need something to do while you wait for Eclipse to hit theaters, right?

Twilight & History

The Twilight Saga is chock-full of opportunities to explore history lessons — after all, some of Meyer’s vampires are hundreds and thousands of years old! In fact, we’ve even dabbled in a few Twilight History Lessons ourselves.

But our dabblings are nothing compared to the extensive history lessons offered in Twilight & History, the new book edited by Nancy Reagin. The book begins with an extensive timeline comparing human history with Twilight Saga history, and important events in the lives of the characters from Meyer’s books.

From there, Twilight & History features a variety of chapters focusing on different histories drawn from The Twilight Saga: what life was like during Edward’s youth in early 20th century Chicago; Quileute history; the modern-day fairy tale. The book also delves into histories for each member of the Cullen family: the Civil War (Jasper), Appalachian roots (Emmett); mental illness in the early 20th century (Alice); the witch hunts of Puritan London (Carlisle) and more. The book even gets into the history of vampire folklore, and explores the history of the American family and how the Cullens fit into that dynamic.

This is a great way to explore lessons in history using The Twilight Saga. And hey, we all know … those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it!

Twilight & Philosphy

Anyone who’s even been remotely involved in the Twilight fandom knows that the subject can always spark a debate of some kind, whether we band together to argue against the Twilight haters, or if we’re arguing Team Edward versus Team Jacob amongst ourselves. But the editors of Twilight & Philosophy take it to the next level — delving deep into philosophical subjects broached by Meyer’s series.

The book is broken up into four parts based on the books in the series: Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn — though many of the topics cover subjects that appear in all four novels. Here’s what the publishers had to say:

What do the struggles of “vegetarian” vampires who control their biological urge for human blood say about free will?
Are vampires morally absolved if they kill only animals and not people?
From a feminist perspective, is Edward a romantic hero or is he just a stalker?
Is Jacob “better” for Bella than Edward?

Those are just a handful of the 18 topics covered in Twilight & Philosophy, and while you may not agree with everything the writers have to say, one thing is for certain: they’ll certainly get you talking.

And really, there’s nothing better than intellectual debate, right?

Twilight & Education Contest

The Contest:

Tell us how you think Twilight can be used in the classroom!

Do you have ideas for essay or project topics related to the series? What about a history or science lesson based on The Twilight Saga? What other subjects can you think of that could use Twilight in the classroom — what about music, art, math, literature, writing, etc.?

The more creative — the better!

How to Enter:

Use the comment form below to tell us your ideas.

Be sure to enter a valid e-mail address into the form area, so we can reach you if you win (e-mail addresses are not made public.)

The Prizes:

Three winners will be chosen based on the quality of their entries:

1st Prize: A copy of Twilight & Philosophy, Twilight & History, Defining Eclipse and a Defining Twilight T-shirt

2nd & 3rd Prize: A copy of Twilight & History, Defining Eclipse and a Defining Twilight T-shirt

(Prizes courtesy Wiley & Brian Leaf)

The Rules:

  • Prizes can only be mailed to addresses in the U.S. (Sorry int’l folks – it’s just too dang expensive!)
  • Please only enter once. If you enter more than once, you will be disqualified.
  • Be sure to explain your ideas clearly, using good grammar & spelling


We’re giving you lots of time to win these great prizes!

The deadline is Midnight (PT) on Wednesday, June 30th.

Questions? Leave ’em in the comments & we’ll reply!

Be sure to check out everything from 30 Days of Eclipse.

UPDATE 7/1/10 – Comments have been closed. This contest is over. We’ll be choosing a winner soon. Thanks for entering!


20 Responses

  1. I think Twilight could be used in many classrooms. Obviously history and lit or English classes. For history, maybe a paper on Jasper in the Civil War using historical facts of course. English or Lit, maybe choosing a passage and interpreting it or using a passage as inspiration to write your own poetry . I think debate would be a great class to use Twilight in. Such as the question posed, “Is Jacob “better” for Bella?” Using it to debate what society considers “healthy relationships” or what we are willing to put ourselves through as human beings for someone or something we love or want.

  2. I think using Twilight would be good for many parts in a classroom. The first place i think of is vocabulary or English, there are so many new words to learn. I had no clue what epoch meant until I had read the book and then looked it up.Then I feel this could inspire a reader to write something of his/her own. Another would be History, I mean when Edward, Carlisle or Jasper would tell about their history the class could match up things he/she knows from that time period, along with making a time line. I don’t think you could use Twilight in science. Maybe to look at how fast or other. I think you could use Twilight for gym class!! See if you could run as fast..Well i know there are much more but this is what I feel would work well.

  3. There are a lot of ways Twilight could be used in the classroom.
    For literature and English: All of those words could be used of course. Also Romeo and Juliet, and Pride and Prejudice are mentioned so that could make kids want to read the classics. And the poetry like phrases Edward uses can also inspire teens to write poetry.
    For Math: I guess you could use the Twilight Saga in word problems.
    For Social Studies and History: Jasper was in a war that you could study about. You could also make a timeline of all the events that happened in one book.
    For Science: Teens could study how they think vampire transformation works. Like where the venom enters they could estimate how long it would take to takeover the whole bady and what parts of the body would grow stronger first.
    For Music: Edward plays music that you can find the notes online for.

  4. Edward listens to music of his time which is classical. You could learn classical music from the book.

    You could do a compare and contrast essay to romeo and juliet.

    You could try and do a collage through art mediums to show the love that they have for eachother.

    When in bio and learning mitosis you could use twilight as an example.

    Anything else bio you could study the possibility of the dna and temperature changes.

    The books are very educational.

  5. it would be really good for history, like what carlisle did before, hunting down witches, vampire, etc.
    you could learn what kind of stuff they did back then to find them.
    alice, what exactly did they do in an asylum.
    and music, Edward likes old music.
    the books are really educational , you can learn a lot of stuff.

  6. I think that Twilight can be used in any classroom. (I’ll list my ideas in order of my schedule this year.)
    History- Obviously the book “Twilight & History” describes this. Relating the lives of the characters to the historical time period. (A few months ago they mentioned Spanish Influenza and I was all EDWARD!!!!)
    Gym- Eclipse style newborn fight training? Arm Wrestling? Rock breaking with your bare hands? Crushing bed frame flowers into squished mass of metal?
    Science- The biological possibilities in the Twilight world. I’ve sparked so many conversations with my friends about the possibility of Nessie’s conception.
    Math- Calculating (ex problem: Edward Cullen became a vampire in 1918. If he “fed” once, twice, or three times a week what is the mean, median, and mode of the possible times he has fed.)
    Spanish- Translate things. Writing about characters or stars. (I wrote one of my Mid Term essays this year on an imaginary flight I took where I sat next to Taylor Lautner and he fell in love with me and we went to Haiti together and helped victims of the earthquakes.{I write really odd Spanish essays})
    Chorus/Music- Discussions/Lessons based on the movie soundtracks and the book play lists made by Stephenie Meyer. Also listening to music discussed in the movies/books. (Claire de Lune?)
    English- Well this is an easy one. Reading, writing, what more can I say. This year my class had to write and give speeches about a group of people we felt were discriminated against. Some did serious topics such as racial discrimination. Other did absolutely ridiculous one like cartoon characters. Mine was Twilight fans. I felt that we are all seen as stereotypical twihards. Like to extremes that we would stalk the stars. I am not like that but am still a twihard and I used the speech to defend myself and others like me. Not to mention things that could be done such as comparison essays to classics.

  7. Well once you think about it you can do a whole lot with the Twilight Saga in the classroom, here’s what I thought of.
    Math- I actually themed a project I had to do in geometry around twilight, we had to do pop-ups. There’s also using word problems with a twilight theme.
    English- Obviously there’s reading the books mentioned in the series, but you can also write fanfictions, or you can learn the vocab words mentioned in the “Defining Twilight” books.
    Science- I flipped when we started learning about mitosis, it made me pay a whole lot more attention than I normally do.
    Social Studies(history)- You can study the time periods that Carlisle, Esme, Alice, Jasper, Rosalie, and Edward lived through. Then recreating those time peroids.
    Music- Learning about Debussy and other classical musicians.
    Gym- “Newborn” physical training, Arm wrestling
    Spanish- Translation of different passages from the books.
    Theatre- acting out scenes from the books.
    Speech- Discussing issues involving the books.

  8. As a music teacher my favorite use for Twilight is having students create their own soundtrack for the book. Obviously, Stephenie uses music as a muse (as do many other writers). It’s interesting to see what the student’s take on certain scenes or chapters in the book are. The students need to have a good grasp on both the book and music.

  9. 1. Essay-Why do you think Edward fell in love with Bella? And vis versa.

    2. Math-Create a Twilight themed town and find the measurements, area, perimeter, or surface area of the landmarks.

    3. Music- Create your own soundtrack to the book.

    4. Essay-Compare Twilight to other vampire/romance books and tell if you like Twilight better or not.

    5. Science-When learning about imprinting and animal behavior or mitosis, use Twilight as an example.

    6. P.E.-Perform the Newborn fight scene.

    7. Drama-Turn Twilight into a play.

    8. S.S.-Pick your favorite Cullen and study their time period.

    9. English-Read the book then create a shoebox book report.

    10. Create an alternate ending to Breaking Dawn.

    11. Art-Create or recreate your own movie poster.

    12. Art-Create a Twilight collage.


  10. I know that theis may be an odd and kind of controversial angle to take but it is one that is inspired by many critiques of the Twilight Saga. I believe that Twilight could be used to teach Health and Sex. Ed. Why? Many critics of Twilight call it a large metaphor for abstinence. Since Edward and Bella, like many young couples practicing abstinence, struggle and finally do make it to their wedding night. This would be a great example to teach teens and maybe influence them about abstinence.


  11. I think you could use Twilight in each of these catagories in the classroom. In English you could use the vocab, but I am pretty sure everyone has said that already so I also think you could, have a contest on who can write the best fan fiction with some of the vocab words and with new ones. For History you could do a project where you find a date in time where the cullens would be alive and write a story about them in that important event in history. Take when Abraham Lincoln got shot, some one could write a fan fiction about them being there during that time. For music you could learn to play Clair de Lune. You could also write your own music that you think should go in the Twilight soundtrack. For art, you could practice them drawing an apple in a pair of hands. Like the cover of twilight, it is not that difficult a drawing so you could start there then ask them to draw a piece of artwork that would be better for the book covers. My last idea would be what was written in the comment above me. You can use the idea that Bella and Edward were able to wait and save themselves so why can’t we. I think the twilight books would be great in a class room. I have personally read each book 22 times and I think it is an amazing book.

  12. There are infinite amount of ways Twilight can be used to teach English. I think the class could debate what they think Stephenie Meyer did well, and what she didn’t do well (because of course there are going to be Twi-haters in the class- it’s just a fact of life). One topic of discussion: purple prose, using too many adjectives. Does this make the writing better? Or does it make it amateur? Why do you like/dislike Twilight? What would you take from the author’s writing to improve your own writing? Write some fan-fiction. Learn the vocabulary. As for science, how would imprinting help make stronger wolves? How does this occur in nature? Is vampire venom a virus or poison? Is it “realistic” for vampires to be so strong? If vampires did exist, what would they be like while still following the rules of nature? History: study the time periods. What would it be like to live when the characters did? Is everything historically correct? You could combine English and history by writing fan-fiction from one of the time periods the characters lived in. There are a million things you could do with Twilight, Its chock full of interesting ideas.

  13. History-Rosalie for example, her timeline, the 30’s, the great depression and hitler.
    Gym-running ( vampire speed )
    Music- Edward listens to Debussy .

  14. […] and Philosophy was cited in “A Guide to Twilight Saga Educational Materials” on Twilight Novel Novice. Anyone who’s even been remotely involved in the Twilight fandom knows […]

  15. For art about one day a month depending on the teacher the students could work a painting,drawing,sculpture,etc. That has something to do with the twilight saga. Then at the end of that week the class votes on the winner and take a picture of it. Then send the picture to the cast in fan mail. In History my idea was about once a month (again depends on the teacher.) the teacher could just teach the lesson normally then students could get into groups and together write a little story of Jasper’s point of veiw of what was happening in that point of history. For health the teacher could dress up as Dr. Cullen and teach the students as Carlisle would. And last but not least in science the teacher could give the group that finishes each assignment first Edward and Bella’s golden onion.

  16. i would say that twilight is the best in using for drama class to have plays as twilight and hopefully having more details to them from the book. Also the history of where each vampire has come from. Maybe this can also be another greek mythology there had to be vampires in there some where? they have special powers. So the twilight books would be great for an english class too. 🙂

  17. I think that Twilight definitely can be used in school. I think it would be a great idea to write about certain times in history throught the characters eyes.

    Like if you used Jasper to write about the Civil War describe dates, things that happened.

    You can even use Rosalie’s time and talk about the post depression and things like that.

    I think its great that there are books like this out there. Then people can learn with something they love.


  18. I really like the idea of using twilight to reach younger crowds and educate them. I think using these books will help to make history a lot more relatable.

    By using these books in class you can write a type of diary pretending you were in those times with the characters.

  19. I would love to study from the twilight books. I think these books that you are giving away are a great way to get history info.

    I think it would be a good idea to do some math problems involving the cullens, how long they live, how many hours of sleep they have missed out on.

    I also think it would be great to mix in some essays on perspectives from everyone’s life. Geographically. Like what alaska is like, and south america.

    I hope I win these!


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