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 Molly give Big Joe for his birthday?

2. How much does Charlie's mother give the Colonel for Bertha?

3. What does the Colonel do even though he accepts Charlie's mother's offer?

4. How successful is the animal charmer?

5. Of what does the thing hanging from the fence remind Thomas?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Big Joe feel about food and what is his favorite food?

2. What does Charlie do when he sees Thomas in a fight with Jimmy Parsons and what happens to the boys who are fighting?

3. Why is Charlie upset by the Colonels plans for Bertha and what does he do to thwart those plans?

4. How does Thomas' father die?

5. Of what does the dead crow remind Thomas?

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

7. What do Charlie, Thomas, and Molly do when one of the mice is caught and killed?

8. At the novel's opening, who is Thomas Peaceful with and why is he determined not to sleep?

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

10. What does Big Joe ask his mother about heaven and what is her response?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss one of the following:

1. Thoroughly analyze how the setting informs the plot in Private Peaceful.

2. Trace and analyze one major theme of Private Peaceful. How is the theme represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

3. Trace and analyze two secondary themes of Private Peaceful. How are the themes represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

Essay Topic 2

Over the course of Private Peaceful, Thomas grows as a person in both complexity and understanding. Private Peaceful might be considered a slice of Thomas's larger story of his "coming of age." It might be said that Private Peaceful is a "bildungsroman" of Thomas Peaceful. Discuss the following:

1. Define Bildungsroman, or "Coming of Age," and give several examples from literature you have read.

2. Trace and analyze the character of Thomas as he changes from a more carefree, innocent boy to a wiser, young man. What are the significant events that change Thomas?

3. After thoroughly analyzing Thomas's growth throughout Private Peaceful, do you think Private Peaceful could be considered Thomas's Coming of Age story? Why or why not?

4. Are there any other characters in Private Peaceful who go through a Coming of Age experience? Who? Why do you think so?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the following:

1. What is a plot? What are the most important elements of a plot and their definition? Do all novels have a plot? Why or why not?

2. Write a brief synopsis of the plot of Private Peaceful, identifying where the various elements of the plot occur (Exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution or denouement). Do you find it difficult to identify the plot? Why or why not? What about the various elements of the plot?

3. Identify the major sub-plots and their elements in Private Peaceful. (The subplots may not contain every element of a major plot). Do the sub-plots add to the main plot? Why or why not. Are the sub-plots interesting in and of themselves? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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