Tunnel in the Sky 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 rare treat does Jack share with Rod during their first meal together?

2. In Chapter 7, why do Rod, Jack, and Jimmy decide to start a signal fire?

3. What sort of gun does Rod obtain from the school armorer, prior to leaving Earth for his final exam?

4. At Emigrants' Gap, Rod watches emigrants from the Australasian Republic being sent to a destination planet known as what?

5. Early in Chapter 6, what does Rod accuse Jack of stealing?

Short Essay Questions

1. What unusual phenomenon do Jack and Rod see in the sky at the end of Chapter 5, in addition to the pentagonal constellation?

2. What unusual decision have Rod's parents made, and why?

3. What shocking secret does Jimmy reveal to Rod, regarding Jack?

4. What hunting technique do Rod and Jack develop together?

5. Why does Deacon Matson fail several students before they even start their final exam?

6. List several ways in which the futuristic Earth of "Tunnel in the Sky" differs from our present-day planet.

7. Where does Rod believe he and the other students have been abandoned?

8. Rod's refusal to let go of misguided theories reveals what about his character?

9. What grisly sight does Rod encounter, shortly after arriving alone on an unknown planet?

10. Who does Rod finally agree to partner with, before traveling through the gate to an unknown planet?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Consider the numerous marriages that take place during "Tunnel in the Sky." What qualities draw these couples together? Why is marriage considered so important in the students' settlement? How does Grant use wedding ceremonies to his advantage, while serving as mayor? Why does Rod never seem to consider finding a wife?

Essay Topic 2

In his numerous works of fiction, Robert A. Heinlein managed to predict many items that exist today, including waterbeds and online newspapers. Nevertheless, every work of fiction exists in the slice of time during which it was written, even when the story is set in the future. Do the anachronisms in "Tunnel in the Sky"--from societal attitudes to slang, from racial stereotypes to scientific advancements--add entertainment value or hinder the modern reader's immersion in the story?

Essay Topic 3

What do the cliff dwellings discovered by Rod and Roy in Chapter 11 signify? What does the beach of bones discovered by the same two characters signify? How do the two characters react to their discoveries? How do the beach of bones and they cliff dwellings amplify the sense of abandonment felt by the students on the unknown planet?

(see the answer keys)

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