The Sky Is Gray Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Ernest J. Gaines
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 137 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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 is James "go'n get out" to "wave it down"?

2. Why is the tip of Monsieur Bayonne's finger hard?

3. Why doesn't James want anyone to tell Mama about his hurting?

4. How much money will Mama have left over after paying for travel and cost of pulling a tooth?

5. In Chapter 1, what do the cows do in the pasture?

Short Essay Questions

1. In the opening of the first chapter of The Sky is Gray, what is James waiting for and what is he going to do?

2. What does James think about when he is so cold he feels like he's going to die?

3. What does James do first thing in the morning in Chapter 2?

4. What does James think about when he looks up at his Mama while they are waiting in the dentist's office?

5. When James thinks about home during his walk back to the cafe what does he remember?

6. What kind of things does Mama consider crybaby stuff according to James?

7. Why does James think the little old lady must be crazy?

8. When the young man starts talking about questioning everything what does the preacher do?

9. What kind of solution is given to James to help with his toothache?

10. What does James see when he looks at the river?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout the story, The Sky is Gray, James and his mother are almost always together. Describe Octavia and James' relationship. Would you consider their relationship to be a normal mother/son connection? Why or why not? How does James feel about his mother? How does Octavia feel about her son? Why doesn't Octavia express her love for James and do you think she really loves him?

Essay Topic 2

Ty is James' little brother and seems to provide a bit of comic relief to a rather sad and depressing tale. Why do you think it was important to include Ty in the story? What are some examples of Ty's character that provide a sort of comic relief to the story? Why do you think the author included these instances in his story? Do you think Mama treats Ty differently than she treats James? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

The story, The Sky is Gray takes place during about a day of James' life. Do you feel connected at all with James after only "knowing" him for a day? If so, how and why? If not, why not? Why do you think the author chose to only have the story cover one day of James' life? Was the story effective in the way it was told? Was time an important factor in the story or did it not matter that the story spans the duration of only one day?

(see the answer keys)

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