Vocabulary Test: (Chapters 1-4)
The Hunger Games: Themes and Concepts
A Well-Told Story
Constructing an action sequence
Reflecting on the Event's Significance pp. 48-49
1. Focus on the climax of your event. Write a paragraph describing the action
using short and long sentences to control the intensity of your narrative.
2. Recalling Your Remembered Feelings and Thoughts
3. Exploring Your Present Perspective
4. Formulating a Tentative Thesis Statement
The test covers the
words from Chapters
You will have 15
minutes to complete
There are 20 words.
In your groups
Take five minutes to discuss the various themes
and concepts that appear in The Hunger Games.
Try to identify particular passages from the text
that support your assertions
THEMES AND CONCEPTS
FREEDOM AND OPPRESSION
MATERIALSIM AND CLASS
• A Well-told story
To create suspense,, Wolff uses a combination of short and long sentences.
Reread this paragraph and consider how they work here.
I snapped awake at 2:18 A.M., the bloodshot numerals staring at me from the nightstand. For years
on end, I woke up at this exact time every night, regardless of what time zone I was in. But after
seventeen years I had just started sleeping through the night. I had finally outrun the old fears. Or so I
had convinced myself.
Remote sirens warbled in the night. At first I figured they were in my head, the soundtrack to the
dream. But the distant wail got louder instead of fading. I hadn’t awakened on my own.
I ran through what I remembered from the previous evening – the presidential debate had closed out
prime time, and after the commentariat finished yammering, I’d fallen asleep watching a high-speed
chase on the news. A guy in a beat-to-shit Jeep Cherokee, hauling ass down the 405, a legion of
black-and-whites drawn behind him like a parachute.
I blinked hard, inhaled, and looked around. Same Lemon Pledge scent of my third-floor condo. My
sweat imprint on the sheets and pillow. Breeze rattling palm fronds against my balcony in the next
And a watery blue light undulating across the bedroom ceiling.
I sat up.
The TV, across the room on the steamer trunk, was off. But the distant sirens continued.
And then, along with the light on the ceiling, the sirens abruptly stopped.
I threw off the sheets and padded across the carpet, stepping over a discarded Sports Illustrated and
sloughed off dress shirts form the job I’d left a week ago. In my plaid pajama bottoms, I ventured into
the all-purpose living room, heading for the balcony. The police lights had flickered through the
locked sliding glass door. Halfway to it I froze.
A thick black nylon rope was dangling from the lip of the roof, its end coiled on my balcony.
No longer groggy, I opened the sliding glass door and stepped silently out onto the balcony, rolling
the screen shut behind me. My balcony with its Brady Bunch-orange tiles overlooked a narrow Santa
Monica street populated by other generic apartment buildings. Streetlights were sporadic. I
confronted the rope for a quiet moment, then looked around, expecting who knows what.
Bulky shadows of cars lined the gutters. An SUV was double-parked, blocking the street. No
headlights, no dome light. Tinted windows. But a huff of smoke from the exhaust pipe. A sedan, dark
and silent, wheeled around the turn and halted, idling behind the SUV.
Terror reached through seventeen years and set my nerves tingling.
I squinted to see if I could make out a police light bar mounted on either roof. In my peripheral
vision, the tail of the rope twitched. The roof creaked. Before I had a chance to think, a spotlight
blazed up from the SUV, blinding me. A zippering sound came from above, so piercing that my teeth
1. Focus on the climax
of your event. Write a
paragraph describing the
action using short and
long sentences to control
the intensity of your
Show that the event was important
• Dramatize the event so readers can understand
your feelings about it.
• Show scenes from your point of view so readers
can identify with you.
Tell us that the event was important
• Tell how you felt at the time of the experience
• Tell how you feel about it now, in reflection.
The Goal: Indicate the Event‟s
Before the opening ceremonies, Katniss meets with her stylist, Cinna, to prepare.
Cinna presses a button and a fancy meal of “Chicken and chunks of oranges cooked
in a creamy sauce laid on a bed of pearly white grain, tiny green peas and
onions, rolls shaped like flowers, and for dessert, a pudding the color of honey”
appears (65). Katniss thinks about how difficult it would be to get a meal like this in
What must it be like, I wonder, to live in a world where food appears at the
press of a button? How would I spend the hours I now commit to combing the
woods for sustenance if it were so easy to come by? What do they do all
day, these people in the Capitol, besides decorating their bodies and waiting
around for a new shipment of tributes to roll in and die for their entertainment?
I look up and find Cinna‟s eyes trained on mine. „How despicable we must
seem to you,‟ he says. (65)
Katniss doesn‟t respond to Cinna‟s statement, but she agrees in her head. “He‟s
right, though. The whole rotten lot of them is despicable” (65).
Although our world does not really consist of a Capitol and many districts, there
are still some people who live more comfortably than others. For people like me who
live in privilege, life is easy. Food is readily available if I want to eat. Outside of
school, I don‟t really have many responsibilities. I don‟t have to worry about how I will
survive day to day. My family has told me on many occasions to think about how lucky
I am to live the way I do. In other countries, life is hard. In Africa, children starve to
death as a result of famine and poverty. People my age in some countries are working
more than my parents do. Katniss‟s disgust for the extravagant Capitol is similar to
the disgust I felt for myself when I listened to an account of one man‟s visit to
factories in China.
The Strategy: Recall Remembered Feelings and Thoughts: Answer
1. What were your expectations before the event?
2. What was your first reaction to the event as it was happening and
right after it ended?
3. How did you show your feelings? What did you say?
4. What did you want the people involved to think of you? Why did you
care what they thought of you?
5. What did you think of yourself at the time?
6. How long did these initial feelings last?
7. What were the immediate consequences of the event for you
Pause now to reread what you have written. Then write another sentence
or two about the event‟s significance to you at the time it occurred.
The Strategy Continued: Explore Your Present Perspective
1. Looking back, how do you feel about this event? If you understand it
differently now than you did then, what is the difference?
2. What do your actions at the time of the event say about the kind of
person you were then? How would you respond to the same event if
it occurred today?
3. Can looking at the event historically or culturally help explain what
happened? For example, did you upset racial, gender, or religious
expectations? Did you feel torn between identities or cultures? Did
you feel out of place?
4. Do you see now that there was a conflict underlying the event? For
example, were you struggling with contradictory desires? Did you
feel pressured by others? Were you desires and rights in conflict
with someone else‟s? Was the event about power or responsibility.
5. Pause to reflect on what you have written about your present
perspective. Then write another sentence or two, commenting on
the event‟s significance as you look back on it
Goal: Formulating a Tentative
Readers do not expect you to begin your narrative
essay with the kind of explicit thesis statement
typical of argumentative or explanatory writing. If
you do decide to tell readers explicitly why the event
was meaningful or significant, you will most likely do
so as you tell the story, by commenting on or
evaluating what happened, instead of announcing
the significance at the beginning. Keep in mind that
you are not obliged to tell readers the
significance, but you must show it through the way
you tell the story.
Review what you wrote for Reflecting on the Event‟s
Significance, and add another two or three sentences, not
necessarily summarizing what you already have written but
extending your insights into the significance of the event, what it
meant to you at the time, and what it means to you now. These
sentences must necessarily be speculative and tentative because
you may not fully understand the event‟s significance in your life
Read: HG through chapter 12. SMG p 37 “Commentary:
Autobiographical Significance,” and 625-633.
Post #5: Post your draft: Long quote; transition; thesis; intro to
event, description of place(s), description of people, a dialogue
or two, the climax (with short and long sentences working to
achieve your goal), and a paragraph that speaks to the
significance or your event (use the list of answers to the
questions on slide #10 and #11); end with framing plan.
Study: Vocab 5-7
Bring: HG and SMG; A copy of post #5