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Teacher's Guide for CALLIOPE Charles Dickens Master Novelist

May 2006

Teacher's Guide prepared by: Celestine Smith Candida

"The Pickwick Papers"
Activity 1 Directions: Read the installments in order to answer the following questions.
Installment One- pages 4-6
  1. Why was the cabman upset with Mr. Pickwick?
  2. Where did Mr. Tracy Tupman and the stranger go?
  3. Whose suit did the stranger wear?
  4. Why was Dr. Slammer upset with the stranger?
  5. Why did Dr. Slammer demand a written apology from Mr. Winkle?
  6. What happened when Mr. Winkle goes to meet Dr. Slammer?

Installment Two- pages 8-9

  • Why were the Pickwickians late to Manor Farm?

Installment Three- pages 12-15

  1. Why was Mrs. Bardell suing Mr. Pickwick?
  2. How much was Mrs. Bardell asking in damages?
  3. What did Mr. Winkle see in Mr. Pickwick's room?
  4. What was the verdict?
  5. What did Mr. Pickwick tell Messrs. Dodson and Fogg after the verdict?
Installment Four- pages 22-23
  1. Why was Mr. Pickwick in debtor's prison?
  2. Why was Mrs. Bardell sent to debtor's prison?
  3. How did Mrs. Bardell win her release from prison?
  4. How did Mr. Pickwick help Mr. Jingle?
  5. How did Mr. Pickwick help Mr. Winkle and Arabella Allen?
  6. Why did Mr. Pickwick decide to buy a house and settle down?
Activity 2 Directions: After reading the four installments, how would you describe the following:
  1. Mr. Pickwick
  2. The Pickwickians - Mr. Tupman, Mr. Winkle, Mr. Snodgrass, Mr. Jingle
  3. The setting of the stories
Activity 3 Directions: The Pickwick Papers had illustrations accompanying the text. Create your own book of illustrations based on these four installations.
"George Cruikshank"- pages 6-7
  1. An illustrator draws the pictures that accompany a story or an article. Choose a section of this articles to illustrate.
  2. Describe George Cruikshank, and explain how his personality led to the break up of his friendship with Charles Dickens.

"Sketches by Boz"- pages 10-11

Charles Dickens wrote sketches about the people and places around him. Have students try their hand at writing sketches about the things they come in contact with in their day-to-day life. Next, have them take the material and create their own short story.

"A Dickensian Childhood"- pages 17-18

    1. How was Charles Dickens' childhood experiences portrayed in his novels?
    2. How did the family get out of debtor's prison?
    3. Why did John Dickens decide to put his son back in school at age 13?
"Children Living in Hard Times"- page 19
    1. What was Dickens job at the shoe-black factory?
    2. Have students do a compare and contrast of children who worked during the Victorian Age with children who are child laborers today in Third World countries.
    3. Create a Bill of Rights for Children.
"On Tour in America"- pages 24-27
    1. What expectations did Dickens have about his American tour?
    2. How did those expectations fall short?
    3. What was his criticism of America and Americans?
    4. Why did Dickens cancel stops in the South?
    5. Why were Americans disappointed when they saw Dickens?
    6. Why was his tour considered a failure?
    7. Have students create postcards showing the America of 1842.
    8. Have students create posters advertising Dickens tour in America.
"Fantastically Flat"- pages 32-35
    1. Explain a flat character
    2. Explain a round character.
    3. How did Dickens use flat and round characters in his novels?
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