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. Grandma comes out of the cobhouse, frightening the boys, and covers the leader in what?

2. Mary Alice is enrolled as a __________.

3. What is burgoo stew?

4. Mad, Grandma affixes a spare tire to the front of the farmer's tractor in the barn, and does what?

5. Why does Grandma do this with the tractor?

Short Essay Questions

1. Where does Mary Alice go directly after arriving in town? What is happening there when Mary Alice arrives?

2. How does Grandma defeat Mildred, the bully? What lesson does this teach Mary Alice?

3. What is Armistice Day? What is a holiday that we have that serves a similar purpose? What is the purpose of this holiday?

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

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

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

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

8. What is theme is strong in this section? Support your response with information from this section.

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

10. How does Mildred go about attempting to collect the dollar from Mary Alice? What does this reveal about Mildred?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Christmas season brings many surprises.

Part 1) What are the Christmas season surprises? How does each surprise come about? How are these surprises significant to the plot and/or character development?

Part 2) How is surprise an important aspect of this book? What other surprises take place throughout this book? What are the purposes of all these surprises? How are various characters change by the surprises in this story?

Part 3) What surprises have been significant in your own life? How have you been changed by surprise events? How can you relate to the characters in this book, regarding surprising events?

Essay Topic 2

"A Dangerous Man" touches upon the stereotype of spring.

Part 1) What is the stereotype of spring? How is this touched upon in this chapter? How does this stereotype affect the characters in this book?

Part 2) What is the author's purpose for focusing on this stereotype? How is this stereotype tied to other events and/or themes in this book?

Part 3) What is another story that focuses on this stereotype? What is the reason for this? What are the similarities between this story and "A Year Down Yonder"?

Essay Topic 3

The Epilogue takes place several years later.

Part 1) Describe the Epilogue. What is the purpose of the Epilogue? How does the way in which the Epilogue was written compare to the rest of the book?

Part 2) How has Mary Alice changed over the years? How has the world also changed in such a relatively short period of time? How does the Epilogue wrap up the story that takes place throughout the previous chapters of the book?

Part 3) Is the Epilogue necessary? Why or why not? Is it an effective ending to the story? Why or why not? Is this how you would have ended the story Why or why not? If not, how would have ended it?

(see the answer keys)

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