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Questions for Roald Dahl's Boy
For All Guided Reading Questions
Directions: Each response should be in the form of a complete hamburger paragraph, including a clear topic sentence, a few supporting details from the text, and a conclusive statement. Hint: It's a good idea to read all questions carefully before making your selection. Make sure you put your name on the top, left-hand side of you paper.
Here is an example of a completed GR:
In the chapters “Going to Norway” and “The Magic Island,” Dahl remembers the Norwegian foods he ate as a child on vacation with his family. When he first arrived in Norway, they stopped to see his maternal grandparents. Each year, everyone sat down around a large table to celebrate the family's reunion with an annual feast. Dahl writes that in Norway, people like to eat fresh fish. His family ate a large poached flounder served with hollandaise sauce and new potatoes. For dessert, they ate homemade ice cream mixed with burnt toffee. During the long meal, they toasted each other and drank a lot. At the magic island, the best meal was breakfast, when plates of different kinds of food were set down for you to choose from. Again, the foods were traditional Norwegian foods, such as pickled herring and Norwegian goat cheese. There was also a lot of meat. He remembers these foods because they were unique to his time spent on vacation, a time that Dahl says was “idyllic.” Also, as we talked about in class, we experience life through our senses and think about our experiences in relationship to our physical bodies.
by Roald Dahl
GR1, Pages 11-34: Choose two
1. In “Papa and Mama” what did Harald and Oscar have in common? Describe in detail.
2. In “Kindergarten” what factors contributed to Harald's death?
3. Describe in detail Roald Dahl's first memories of the Llandoff Cathedral School as presented in the “Bicycle and the Sweet-shop.”
4. In "The Bicycle and the Sweet-shop,” according to Thwaites's father, what is Bootlace Liquorice made of? How is it made? What happens to everyone who eats it? Cover all three of these points in this answer.
GR 2, Pages 35-52: Choose two
1. Write a full paragraph describing the source of Roald Dahl's pride in the chapter “The Great Mouse Plot.” Why does this event make him feel so good about himself.
2. How does Roald Dahl build suspense in the chapter “Mr Coombes”?
3. In “Mrs. Pratchett's Revenge,” in the end, do you think that young Roald felt remorseful for what he did? Why or why not? Describe in detail.
4. Give a detailed description of Mr. Coombes and Mrs. Pratchett, and then talk about what they have in common.
GR 3, Pages 53-71: Choose two
1. Describe in detail the ritual know as skaaling as presented in “Going to Norway?”
2. In "Going to Norway" and "The Magic Island" how does Roald Dahl portray his mother. Include an adjective that describes her in your topic sentence. The body of your sentence should include a lot of supporting detail.
3. Describe in detail some of the foods that Dahl remembers from childhood in “Going to Norway” and "Magic Island." Why do you think Dahl remembers food so clearly?
4. What was particularly cruel and barbaric about Dahl's operation as presented in “A Visit to the Doctor”?
GR 4, Pages 75-92: Choose two
1. In "First Day" what did the boys use their tuck boxes for? Why was it encouraged by the headmaster?
2. Describe Roald's relationship with his mother in "Writing Home." What do the two do to express their love for each other?
3. Read the pieces of letters Roald includes in "Writing Home." Are they particularly sentimental? How do you explain Roald's attachment to the letters as an adult.
4. As you look at "The Matron" think about what makes a character a believable villain and discuss why "the matron" is or is not a well-developed character or believable villain.
GR 5, Pages 93-122: Choose two
1. Look at the last line in “Homesickness.” Do you think young Roald Dahl is sincere? Why or why not?
2. Write a detailed description of Roald Dahl's mother based on her portrayal in “A Drive in the Motor Car.”
3. Based on your reading of “Captain Hardcastle,” what, if anything, did the caning teach Roald? Did he learn anything? Did he grow from his experiences?
4. Based on your reading of “Captain Hardcastle,” describe Captain Hardcastle in detail, and compare him to other Roald Dahl villains. In what ways is he similar? In what is he different?
GR 6, Pages 123-140: Choose two
1. Pick a passage from “Little Ellis and the Boil” (one or two lines) that you think is extremely well written. You don't have to write out the whole passage, just the page number(s) and beginning and end phrases. Write a paragraph explaining what makes this passage good writing.
2. Throughout the book so far, Dahl has described many medical procedures in detail. Give examples of this and discuss whether, in your opinion, it makes the book more or less enjoyable. Why do you think Roald Dahl included so many medical procedures in this book?
3. Why is “Goat's Tobacco” so funny? Think about the writing elements or tools that make something funny.
4. Based on “Getting Dressed for the Big School,” using the description that begins on the middle of page 136 and ends on the top of page 139, draw a detailed picture of Dahl's uniform and label each of the parts.
GR 7, Pages 141-153: Choose two
1. In “Boazers,” what, exactly, was Williamson's skill in this chapter? Describe in detail.
2. In “The Headmaster,” why would the headmaster smoke his pipe during a flogging?
3. Relate some of the details in “Chocolates” to
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
4. In “Corkers” was Corkers doing the students a service or a disservice by not teaching them math? Explain your answer in as much detail as possible.
GR 8, Pages 154-176: Choose two
1. Describe the rules and rituals of fagging as it is presented in the chapter “Fagging.” Give specific details from the book.
2. In “Games and Photography,” what is the optimism we see regarding Roald's life? What does it predict about his future?
3. In “Goodbye School,” Dahl writes, “A person is a fool to become a writer.” Why does he say this? What does he mean by this?
4. In your opinion, what impact did the hardship that Roald experienced as child have on his future? How do you think these hardships hurt or helped in life? Be very specific.
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