Educating Esme: Diary of a Teacher's First Year Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Esmé Raji Codell
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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. How does the student Codell makes teacher for the day start the morning?

2. What does Codell tell Mr. Turner about why he did not receive her classroom's inaugural newsletter?

3. Whose mother complains about Codell insisting on buying dictionaries for the children?

4. Which is NOT one of the ways in which Codell's class learns about Native Americans?

5. Part I begins with a letter to potential fifth-graders written by whom?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Codell relieved when she refrains from yelling at Latoya for continually coming in late one week?

2. What award does Codell win early in Part III, and why is it important to her?

3. Briefly describe the day when Billy Williams becomes teacher for a day.

4. What is Vanessa's problem with the Christmas assembly, and how does she overcome it?

5. How is the "time machine" built?

6. What is B.B.'s home situation like?

7. Why does Codell resent the "educational chiropractor" brought in by Mr. Turner?

8. Describe the circumstances surrounding Melanie's birthday on January 8?

9. What is the nature of the struggle between Codell and Mr. Turner in Part I in regards to Codell's proper form of address?

10. Describe Codell's experience with the teachers union representative.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In a few places in the text, Codell speaks of why she's doing what she's doing, and what reward, literally or figurative, she is receiving for her work.

1)Describe two times in the text that Codell has felt "rewarded" in her work.

2)What is the nature of this "reward"? How does this relate to a teacher's purpose in general?

3)What might be considered Codell's ultimate reward, to her mind? In a perfect world, what kind of satisfaction would she be receiving from her work, and what form would it take?

Essay Topic 2

In many ways, Codell presents Mr. Turner as her opposite.

1)Write a paragraph-long character description of Codell, and then of Mr. Turner. Include anything from physical traits to personality traits.

2)Contrast what you've written about each person. How does Codell differ from Mr. Turner?

3)How does the "Madame Esme" controversy further define the differences between the two?

4)How does the Epilogue's graduation speech further define the differences between the two?

Essay Topic 3

Codell must frequently deal with misbehaving students.

1)What is Codell's attitude about bad behavior? Should a teacher consider the student's home situation when disciplining the child?

2)What is a principal's role in addressing and correcting bad behavior?

3)Why does Codell disagree with the corrective behavior administered by the parents of B. B. and Twanette, for two examples?

(see the answer keys)

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