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Teachers: Get the most from your time in the classroom when you use this lesson plan for Robert Cormier's award-winning novel for young adults, The ChocolateWar. In addition to providing comprehensive character analyses, this lesson plan offers guidance in conveying the novel's primary themes, including courage, cowardice, and peer pressure. Examples of guided discussion and study questions from this lesson plan include the following:
- Summarize the incident in class between Brother Leon and Bailey in The Chocolate War. Brother Leon accused Bailey of cheating, and slapped him on the cheek. Bailey insisted he had not cheated. The rest of the class was silent during this dialog, until one of the boys anonymously called out to let Bailey alone. Leon held the class after the bell rang, and told them they had turned the classroom into Nazi Germany. He said Bailey was the only brave one in the room, because he remained true to himself.
- How does the author describe Emile Janza? He describes Emile as a brute, although he did not look like one. He was small and not too strong, even though he was a tackle on the football team. He realized that no one wanted trouble, and he used this knowledge to harass teachers and students.
- Was Goober successful in completing his assignment in Room 19? If so, what helped him complete the task? If not, why not? Yes, he was successful. After he had been there for six hours, a group of masked boys came in and helped him. They finished the task in another three hours.
- Describe the scene in Room 19. Include Brother Eugene's reaction and Archie's response. The author compared it to someone dropping The Bomb. It took 37 seconds for all of the furniture to collapse. Brother Eugene stood at his desk and cried. Archie was watching from the hallway when Brother Leon grabbed him and angrily dug his fingernails into Archie's shoulder while accusing him of making it happen. Archie denied it. He was angry that Brother Leon had spoiled his moment of triumph.
- What happened to the chocolates and the money from the raffle in The Chocolate War? The boys raided the chocolates. The money was safe with Cochran.
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