Stuck in Neutral 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 does Cindy do when the dog is hit by the car?

2. What gives Shawn a chill as his father is leaving his classroom after filming footage for the PBS Special?

3. What happens in Chapter 7 when Shawn and his father are right in front of the camera?

4. What control does Shawn have over his body?

5. Who is Cindy?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Shawn's out-of-body experience like while his father is in the classroom shooting video with a cameraman?

2. What is Shawn able to do when his spirit leaves his body during a seizure?

3. What does the encounter with the crow reveal to Shawn's father, and what thought occurs to him?

4. How does Shawn describe the tests administered by the school psychologist?

5. What does Cindy do when the dog is hit by a car?

6. What does Shawn consider ironic about his actual intelligence and the assumed level of his intelligence within his class at school?

7. How does Shawn learn to read?

8. What kinds of things is Shawn able to remember using his gift?

9. How does Sydney McDaniel support his argument that schools waste money educating the ineducable?

10. How does Shawn's special gift progress and strengthen?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Shawn thinks about how he and his father both have double jointed thumbs and how his father will sometimes perform the "thumb ritual."

Part 1) Provide at least three reasons how the author uses the double-jointed thumbs as an element in the novel. For each, explain how it adds to the novel. Does the juxtaposition of Shawn's thumbs and his father's thumbs create a comparison, contrast, irony, foreshadow, or something else?

Part 2) How does Shawn say he feels during this ritual. Explain what Shawn's feelings about his father during this ritual contributes to the novel.

Essay Topic 2

Why does Shawn love his seizures? Why does Shawn's father, on the other hand, see Shawn's seizures as a symbol of the pain he thinks Shawn experiences on a daily basis? Explore the irony of the contrast between the reality of Shawn's seizures and his father's perception of them.

Part 1) How does Shawn describe his seizures? What can he do while he is having a seizure that he cannot do at any other time?

Part 2) What is Shawn's father's perception of Shawn's seizures? What does he base his perception on? How valid are his perceptions? What does Shawn's father assume about his quality of life because of his seizures? What does Shawn think his father is planning as a result of Shawn's seizures and his father's assumption that they are painful. Why is this ironic?

Essay Topic 3

One of Sydney McDaniel's main reasons for saying he wants to end Shawn's life is because he says he wants to end Shawn's "pain." What does Sydney think that the pain is like for Shawn when he has his daily seizures? Where does he get his information? Is he correct? Name three ways that Sydney's reaction to his son's seizures affects Shawn and the entire family?

(see the answer keys)

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