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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. On Christmas day, what is Mama's condition?
2. What special dessert is Isabel's mother is making on Saturday night?
3. What does Esperanza discover when she opens her valise?
4. What is Mama's diagnosis in Chapter 10?
5. At the market, what does Esperanza buy to give to her mother?
Short Essay Questions
1. In Chapter 11, the strikers want to impede the progress of the asparagus harvest. Why is that an effective tactic?
2. When Esperanza helps Marta after the immigration sweep, what is it about Marta that wins over Esperanza?
3. How does the sequence of events from Miguel and Esperanza's argument, to her money missing work to cast suspicion on Miguel as the thief?
4. How does the short, intimate exchange Mama and Esperanza have after the jamaica effect Esperanza's mood?
5. In Chapter 9, when Mama is in the hospital, describe the quality of Esperanza's care giving.
6. In what way could one see that there is even a subtle class system inherent among migrant workers?
7. In Chapter 9, when Esperanza brings the blanket to the hospital, why do she and Mama cry?
8. At the end of the Chapter 7, Esperanza prays. How do her prayers reveal the subtle change she is beginning to make?
9. In what way is Mama's illness a commentary on the working conditions of the migrant workers?
10. Comment on the image of communal life at this work camp once the work day is over that Ryan portrays in Chapter 7.
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
All of the chapter titles of this novel are names of fruit. After reading the novel, explain why Pam Munoz Ryan, the author might have chosen to title the chapters in this way.
Essay Topic 2
Harvest is a time of celebration and reward. The farmer is rewarded for his hard work by the fruits of his labor. How might Papa's death so soon after harvest be a symbolic of something?
Essay Topic 3
Examine the time span of the story from harvest to harvest. How does the author's use of nature's cycle help her narrative?
This section contains 760 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)