Friday, October 30, 2015

Reading Period 7: October 31 - November 6: A Little Princess

Class meeting: November 6
Due date: November 5, 7pm

Long read:

A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett, chapters 1-7

Short read:

"The Open Window" by Saki (H.H. Munro)


"The Rainbow" by William Wordsworth

Creative Assignment:

Sara thinks of writing a poem called "The Last Doll" but she doesn't do it. So YOU write a poem called "The Last Doll." You can write it in Sara's voice, as you imagine she might have written it, or you can write it as you would write it yourself, if you feel you are reaching a point in your life where you're too old for dolls. It might be interesting to write the poem as Sara might have felt at the end of chapter 7.


The diamond mines are never shown to us in the novel. It's questionable whether they were real or whether they were just a fantasy among men hungry for wealth. Create a picture of what you imagine these fantasy diamond mines would look like. You can do this in any way you want, including using screenshots from a scene you create in Minecraft!

Writing Assignment:

Read this quote from the book:
"Things happen to people by accident," she used to say. "A lot of nice accidents have happened to me. It just HAPPENED that I always liked lessons and books, and could remember things when I learned them. It just happened that I was born with a father who was beautiful and nice and clever, and could give me everything I liked. Perhaps I have not really a good temper at all, but if you have everything you want and everyone is kind to you, how can you help but be good-tempered? I don't know"—looking quite serious—"how I shall ever find out whether I am really a nice child or a horrid one. Perhaps I'm a HIDEOUS child, and no one will ever know, just because I never have any trials."
"Lavinia has no trials," said Ermengarde, stolidly, "and she is horrid enough."
Do you agree with Sara or Ermengarde? Are people's characters developed by the things that have happened to them, or by some inner identity that would be the same regardless of circumstances? Often people's bad behavior is explained or forgiven because they have had a terrible life or a difficult childhood. Is it fair that some children are born into such wealth and ease, as Sara is, and some have trouble getting enough to eat or finding a place to sleep?


Sara says she has "scattered largess" to the populace just like a real princess after she feeds Becky and tells her a story. What is scattering largess? Can you figure it out from the context? You migth also want to look it up. Think about things that you might do to "scatter largess." Maybe you are already doing some things like this -- if so list them, and add a few more things you can think of to be more "royal" in this respect, in your daily life.

Quiz: Find the Evidence

This quiz is all about finding evidence in the story to support an idea. I will give you an idea about the story or characters, and you'll find me a line from the book that supports that idea, and quote the line.

1. Sara Crewe is very young.
2. Sara's father loves her very much.
3. Sara has a kind heart.
4. Sara has a strong imagination.
5. Becky has a miserable life.
6. Becky and Sara are similar.
7. Sara has a temper.
8. Miss Minchin does not think of Becky as a person.
9. Lavinia and Jessie began to make fun of Becky when she was still rich.
10. Sara takes the news of her father calmly.

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