Small Steps Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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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 do Armpit's parents do when he gets home?

2. Who ends up buying the tickets?

3. What does Armpit think about as he eats his lunch?

4. What do Kaira and her band spontaneously decide to do?

5. What does X-Ray say to explain the tickets?

Short Essay Questions

1. About what does the band hint to Kaira and what is her response?

2. What makes Tatiana decide not to go with Armpit and who does he invite?

3. Describe the time leading up to Armpit and Ginny finally getting in their seats.

4. What do Ginny and Armpit do after the concert?

5. What does Armpit's counselor advise Armpit about taking steps?

6. Why does Kaira ride in the band's bus and whose music does the band play for her?

7. How does Armpit finally understand his economics concepts?

8. What happens to Armpit on his way home, and why does the incident not bother him?

9. Who is Ginny and what do she and Armpit talk about when he gets home?

10. What does Armpit impulsively do as far as Tatiana is concerned?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Over the course of Small Steps, Armpit grows as a person in both complexity and understanding. Small Steps might be considered a slice of Armpit's larger story of his "coming of age." It might be said that Small Steps is a "bildungsroman" of Theodore Johnson. 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 Armpit as he changes from a more immature, gullible boy to a wiser, young man. What are the significant events that change Armpit?

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

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

Essay Topic 2

Often, authors will write about "what they know," and sometimes knowing a little about the author makes the books more interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Research and give a brief biographical sketch of Louis Sachar.

2. What in Sachar's background may have helped him in writing Small Steps? What may have influenced the way he depicts various characters and scenes?

3. Do you think there is always some of the author's own life in his/her novels? Why or why not? Give examples.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the following:

1. Who is/are the protagonists of the story and why?

2. Who is/are the antagonists of the story and why?

3. Which 3 secondary characters have the greatest impact on the plot?

4. Are any of the characters dispensable and which ones? Why or why not?

5. Do you think this is a character-driven plot or an action-driven plot? Explain.

(see the answer keys)

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