My Family and Other Animals Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Gerald Durrell
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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. What hobby does Margo take up after settling into the villa?

2. When Spring came, Larry purchases a guitar and a large barrel of strong red wine. What kind of songs does he play?

3. What does George teach Gerry about natural history?

4. What special day is it when Spiro drives Gerry, Mother, and Margo to town to buy furniture?

5. How many years does Spiro spend in America?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Spiro act as the Durrell family's caretaker?

2. When George instituted outdoor lessons, what game did he and Gerry play in the bay, and how did this further his learning?

3. In the garden, Gerry finds an earwig's nest, and posts a sign for passers by to beware and keep quiet. What words were spelled correctly on the sign, and why is that significant to his character?

4. Why was Yani one of the people Gerry liked best?

5. Who instigates the move to Corfu and why?

6. How does the Durrell family breakfast play out?

7. Gerald's original intent for his book was an account of the natural history on the island of Corfu. Why did that change?

8. What did Gerry think about his family's contribution to the book?

9. Gerry ponders what insect movements, on top of the trapdoor, must sound like to a trapdoor spider. What were some of his ideas?

10. What was Theodore's opinion about life on Mars?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Margo is dramatic throughout the book. Cite some of her more dramatic entrances or exits. Were her emotions warranted, or do you think she was overly dramatic?

Essay Topic 2

While on Corfu, the Durrell family lived in three different villas. Explain the differences in each villa by comparing the home, gardens, and countryside of each. In theory, which was Gerry's favorite villa and why?

Essay Topic 3

Mother oftentimes let the children argue amongst themselves until the words became harsh and mean. What does this say about her mothering style? How was it effective or not? If not, how do you think it would have been best to handle Larry, Leslie, Margo, and Gerry? Cite examples.

(see the answer keys)

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