On Golden Pond Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Ernest Thompson
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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 seems sad to Charlie?

2. What does Ethel suggest Charlie do?

3. What did Norman think about Chelsea's swimming abilities.?

4. Who does Ethel see in the woods?

5. Instead of applying for a job, what does Ethel suggest Norman do?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe the setting at the opening of this scene.

2. What other elderly couple is mentioned in this scene and what does Ethel say about them?

3. Who is the elderly couple in the play and where are they arriving at the opening of the play?

4. Give a brief synopsis of Ethel and Charlie's conversation and what the author may be showing through this conversation.

5. How does the broken screen door come into play again and how does it give the reader a better understanding of Norman's character?

6. Describe what happens when Norman uses the phone.

7. Describe the interaction between Ethel and Norman in this scene and say what you think it may mean.

8. What is both a foreshadowing and a "frame" for the play that occurs at the end of this scene?

9. What picture does Norman pick up and what is the story behind it?

10. What question does Norman ask Charlie and what is the implication of Charlie's answer?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Though Ethel and Norman have been married for many years, it is obvious from the very opening of the play that they are quite different. Answer the following questions in a coherent essay using detailed examples from the entire play:

1). Compare and contrast Ethel and Norman's personalities. Give supporting details from the entire play.

2). Do you believe that a marriage is better if the two people are similar or opposites? Explain your reasoning.

3). If you were to meet Ethel and Norman, with whom would you feel the most affinity? Why?

Essay Topic 2

In the very first scene of the play, it is already obvious that one of the themes will be daughter/father relationships. Answer the following questions in a coherent essay using detailed examples from the entire play:

1). Give your opinion about how you think Norman and his daughter will get along, just based upon the little that is revealed in the first scene of the play.

2). The part of the first scene where Norman looks at Chelsea's picture of her in a swimsuit as a teen is a technique called foreshadowing. What does this foreshadow? Is this an effective method to clue the reader in on some future action in the play? Why or why not.

3). Are you as a reader prepared to like Chelsea or not based on what is subtly revealed about her in this first scene? Explain.

Essay Topic 3

In Act 1, Scene 3, young Billy Ray is introduced and hits if off immediately with Norman, who has a somewhat strained relationship with his own daughter, Chelsea. Answer the following questions in a coherent essay using detailed examples from the entire play:

1). Why do you think Norman seems more relaxed and open to Billy Ray versus Chelsea?

2). Do you think Norman would have preferred a son rather than a daughter? Why?

3). Do you think most couples hope for a son as first born or at least having a son to carry on the family name?

4). How do you think the natural inclination for many couples to want at least one son has on the psychological health of daughters?

(see the answer keys)

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