There is nothing more tiring than having to explain to second semester seniors why they need to learn literary elements of short stories yet again. It came to a point where I really wanted to say, because you haven't seemed to learn it from the 10 other teachers who attempted to teach you this material.
But for my own good, I reply with a loving and super education graduate student answer...
"Improving the skills of deducing information from literary texts is one of the best ways to sharpen your critical thinking skills and push you to a higher level of learning. You may not plan to continue reading short stories once you leave school, but the critical thinking skills you gain will last you a lifetime."
My professors would be so proud.
The kids just looked at me like I was crazy, which I must be to pursue a teaching profession.
God Save the Teachers!