A Year Down Yonder Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Richard Peck
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Wordlessly, Grandma stews up some _______ on the stove.

2. The narrator, Mary Alice, gets off the train, and, beyond a few clothes, her only possessions are her cat ____________ and her radio.

3. Why does Grandma believe Mary Alice will not get beat up?

4. What is wrong with Mrs. Abernathy's grown son?

5. Who is Mary Alice's favorite singer?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Grandma get back at Old Man Nyquist? Should she have done this? Why or why not?

2. How does Grandma trick Mildred? What does this reveal about her?

3. What happens to Bootsie one night? Why does this happen?

4. What is a main reason for why Mary Alice does not want to move in with her grandmother? Why might she feel this way?

5. Why does Mary Alice move in with her grandmother? What does this reveal about the Great Depression?

6. What does Mary Alice bring to Grandma's house? Why does she bring this?

7. How does Grandma raise money for Mrs. Abernathy? Is this a good tactic? Why or why not?

8. Describe Halloween in this town. Why might it be like this?

9. What warning does Grandma give Mary Alice before she leaves her at school? What does this warning foreshadow?

10. What is burgoo stew? How might this represent life during the Great Depression?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Daughters of the American Revolution meeting is used as a lesson.

Part 1) Describe the events leading up to the DAR meeting. Why is Grandma asked to participate? Initially, why did you believe she wanted to hold the meeting at her home? What takes place at this meeting? How was this foreshadowed?

Part 2) Why does Grandma decide to teach Mrs. Weidenbach a lesson? How is this lesson taught in typical Grandma fashion? Should she have put Mrs. Weidenbach in her place like this? Why or why not?

Part 3) Do you believe Mrs. Weidenbach learned a lesson? Why or why not? Might there have been a better way to teach Mrs. Weidenbach a lesson? If so, how? If not, why not?

Essay Topic 2

Pride is a theme.

Part 1) What is pride? How is this a theme in this story? What role does Grandma play in this theme? Why? How is this a universal theme?

Part 2) How can you relate to this theme? When has pride been an important theme in your own life? What can you learn about pride from this story?

Part 3) What other themes are important to this story? How is each theme significant? How are these themes connected to the main characters? How are these themes connected to one another?

Essay Topic 3

The main part of the story ends in celebration.

Part 1) Describe this celebration. How is this celebration important to the people of this town? What other celebrations also take place in this story? Why? How are celebrations an important part of life in this town? Why?

Part 2) How do these celebrations balance out the struggles these people face? How might this have been exceptionally important during the 1930s throughout the United States?

Part 3) How are celebrations important today? What specific holidays are particularly important in one's life today? Why?

(see the answer keys)

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