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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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Chapter 20: Questions and Answers

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Study Questions
1. What was the biggest outdoor event of the year?

2. Name at least two social groups represented at the picnic.

3. What were some of the musical instruments found at the picnic?

4. How were the watermelons chilled at the picnic?

5. Why did Marguerite not bring a book to read?

6. Describe the bathroom facilities at the picnic.

7. Who was Marguerite’s first real friend?

8. What was the signal for Marguerite and her friend to meet?

9. What did Miss Williams say was wrong with Tommy’s valentine?

10. What language did the girls teach each other?

1. The biggest outdoor event of the year was the summer picnic.

2. Social groups represented at the picnic were the Elks, Eastern Star, Masons, Knights of Columbus, and Daughters of Pythias.

3. Musical instruments included “cigar-box guitars, harmonicas, juice harps, combs wrapped in tissue paper and even bathtub basses.”

4. Watermelons were chilled by placing them in the Coca-Cola box and filling “all the tubs with ice as well as the big black wash pot.”

5. Marguerite did not bring a book because her grandmother said if she did not play with the other children, she could clean fish, bring water or carry wood.

6. The bathroom facilities were actually just paths going into the woods.

7. Marguerite’s first real friend was named Louise Kendricks.

8. Marguerite and Louise’s signal to meet was two waves of the left hand.

9. Miss Williams was critical of Tommy’s valentine because he did not sign his full name.

10. Marguerite and Louise taught each other the Tut language.

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Chapter 19: Questions and Answers


Chapter 21: Questions and Answers