Private Peaceful Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Michael Morpurgo
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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 does Big Joe after Bertha's burial?

2. Who is with the Colonel when he confronts the boys?

3. What does Thomas' mother start doing for the Colonel?

4. Why does Thomas' father sometimes take Thomas into the woods?

5. How does Thomas feel towards Molly when he see her on Christmas Eve?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Thomas and Charlie get rid of the food they do not like?

2. Of what does the dead crow remind Thomas?

3. How do Charlie and Thomas thwart Grandma Wolf's attempts to get rid of the mice?

4. Describe Thomas and Charlie's poaching experience.

5. Where do they bury Bertha and why kind of funeral does she receive?

6. Who searches for Big Joe and where do they find him?

7. What animal does Big Joe love and who does not share his enthusiasm for the creatures?

8. At the novel's opening, what does Thomas Peaceful want to remember this night?

9. What future does Molly read in the gravel for her and the boys.

10. How does the boys' situation change for the better after the Colonel's wife dies?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Characters are an important part of what makes Private Peaceful interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Thoroughly discuss and analyze Charlie. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he always likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

2. Thoroughly discuss and analyze Molly. What are her strengths? Her weaknesses? How does she contribute to the plot? Is she a sympathetic character? Is she ever likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

3. Thoroughly discuss and analyze the character of Thomas. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he ever likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss one of the following:

1. Trace and analyze the theme of growth in Private Peaceful. Consider the following questions as you write: What characters are most concerned with growth? Why? What are some symbols of growth? Symbols of rigidity? What characters seem rigid?

2. Trace and analyze the theme of courage in Private Peaceful. Which characters struggle with this issue? Why? Which characters seem to possess courage? Why?

3. Trace and analyze the theme of war and peace in Private Peaceful. Would Private Peaceful be considered an anti-war book? How was war portrayed? How were the men who fought in the war portrayed? Were soldiers or war glorified or demonized? Was war and peace the main theme of Private Peaceful? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

There are a number of interesting questions raised by Private Peaceful. Questions that Morpurgo most likely wants readers to consider and think through carefully. Discuss the following:

1. What does the term "author agenda" mean?

2. Name one idea/concept you think may have been a part of the Morpurgo' agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss Morpurgo' probable agenda concerning that idea.

2. Do you think writers who have an agenda for writing should point it out in a preface?

3. How often do you think fiction is written with a clear agenda in mind by the author?

4. Research the life of Morpurgo and see if/where his life may have influenced his writing.

(see the answer keys)

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