Teacher 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. To what ancient writing system did Ashton-Warner refer at the beginning of the book?

2. How long were most of the "stories" written by the students at the beginning of school?

3. How were the children's stories "produced"?

4. Why did Ashton-Warner object to the use of terms such as "do not" in early readers?

5. How many Maori transitional readers did Ashton-Warner end up with?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did early exposure to white cultural norms adversely affect the Maori?

2. Why did Ashton-Warner say that when giving first words to her students, she avoided showing them any illustrations of those words?

3. Why was Ashton-Warner disappointed with the pictures the new teacher had chosen to personalize the children's coat hooks?

4. Why was it important to offer only present tense verbs to new readers?

5. Why did Ashton-Warner write at the end of "Holidays" that she was no longer lonely?

6. Why was teaching the class so back-breaking, according to Ashton-Warner?

7. How did Ashton-Warner describe the moments in her life when she knew the meaning of what was happening to her?

8. What role did discipline play in Ashton-Warner's classroom?

9. Why did Ashton-Warner criticize herself for the way she handled Matawhero's defiance after he hit Gordon?

10. How did the behavior of the children differ in the new classrooms compared to when Ashton-Warner taught at the school?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Maori children in Ashton-Warner's classroom encountered racism from the majority white population in New Zealand. How did these attitudes affect the students at home and in the community? How did it affect them in the classroom? Did having a white teacher have an impact on them, even if she was open and accepting of them? How do societal assumptions and expectations impact a child's ability to perform in school? Do children internalize the prejudices they encounter or are they able to escape them in the classroom? How do teachers deal with the impact these prejudices may have on their students? Is it possible to fully counter them in school?

Essay Topic 2

Ashton-Warner discussed the basic rule of organic teaching as a "creative vent." Explore what she meant by that expression. How does providing children with an opportunity to vent, whether in writing, dance or artwork, help that child grow? If the child is asked to conform to certain educational standards and suppress his own impulses, how does that affect his overall schoolwork? Is some degree of suppression necessary for the sake of classroom unity and atmosphere or should all students be given free rein to express themselves even if they do not follow the curriculum? How does the imposition of adult-determined standards stunt a child's growth, as Ashton-Warner suggested?

Essay Topic 3

The Maori girls in Ashton-Warner's classroom experienced success on the basketball court. Write an essay discussing the role of sports in academics. How does participation in team sports help students in the classroom? How does it help in other areas of life? How can schools ensure that the benefits of participation in sports are extended to all students, regardless of athletic ability?

(see the answer keys)

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