Monday, November 18, 2013

Fishbowl #3: A Long Way Gone, Chapters 7-10

A few reminders if you're looking for an A for the day:

(A) Bring at least one quotation and/or page reference into at least one of your responses.
(B) Explain your thinking thoughtfully and thoroughly (try to avoid the one-sentence response).

(C) Keep it professional, including the usage of proper grammar and spelling.

(D) Comment frequently from the beginning of the conversation to the end.


Remember also that you're welcome to get into a hotseat in the inner circle for a little while and earn some of your daily participation points there.


Enjoy!

141 comments:

  1. On page 59 Ishmael says, "It was the Atlantic ocean...My eyes widened, a smile forming on my face. Even in the middle of the madness there remained that true and natural beauty, and it took my mind away from my current situation as I marveled at this sight." What role do you think nature/astrology played through out the beginning chapters of the book? Does it somewhat represent hope? Why or why not?

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    1. I think that quote is special because its hard to get mad at nature. The stars have always been a sense of direction and that's what I think Ishmael uses to keep his sanity almost with all that's happening around him. That's what gives him hope is nature and rap because it is occurs throughout the whole book.

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    2. I do believe that nature represents hope in someway. For the ocean, it's something that's real and it shows something other than the awful situation he has been in in Sierra Leone. There's a world out there that's not just killing innocent people and I think that Ishmael sees that happy world beyond his own and whisks him away from his struggles.

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    3. I think that nature helps to remind Ishmael that there will always be beauty in the world. I think it helps keep him balanced and make sure his emotions are at bay. The beauty of nature does represent hope because it shows the lack of importance human affairs have in the grand scheme of our world.

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    4. I agree with Clay. Ishmael uses nature and the beauty it offers as a escape route to briefly get away from the madness and suffering that is going on around him. In the beginning of the story on page 7 Ishmael says, "He sat under the shade of the mango, guava, and orange trees and turned his radio to the BBC news." Right from the beginning nature has provided the story with a sense of innocence and joy.

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  2. What do you think Ishmael is trying to tell us? When he say "I became frustrated with living in fear."

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    1. I think he didn't want to be hiding behind a wall. He probably just got frustrated with himself with fears holding him back. No one like to live in fear, at least I know I don't.

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    2. I think that Ishmael is trying to say that he is done being afraid of the rebels and done running away from them, but he knows that it is his only way to survive and not get taken in by the rebels. I also think that he is trying to say that he doesn't want to be in fear but his mind does it automatically.

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    3. By that, I think Ishmael literally means that he's frustrated of living in fear. He has been living with so much fear of the rebels that he's tired and annoyed by it. Ishmael does wants to live a normal life as a normal kid. He doesn't want to always be on the move trying to find a safe place. Because he's been doing it a lot, he becomes frustrated because he isn't able to feel calm and relaxed.

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    4. I believe what Ishmael means by " I became frustrated with fear." was that he became very annoyed at the fact that he never knew if the next day was his last therefore causing him to always be on alert and looking out for danger. After a while, all of the amount of attention that he has put into staying safe seems wasted and he does not feel that it is right that he lives like that anymore.

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    5. I think that he is saying all he has been through has consumed him with fear and that he wants to fight the fear and he wants to become fearless. He wants to be brave.

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    6. In shows and movies the characters will randomly say I am tired of running. If you don't stop running away from something it will drive you insane. And I relating to Jenna, yeah that's all he wants to do is be a normal kid he is 11 or 12 and normally they would enjoy life going to school, playing with friends, etc. But he is getting shot at with RPG's and people trying to kill him.

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    7. I became frustrated with fear is a huge statement that shows you that Ismeal was once afraid and week but now wants to change, wants to become strong and fearless. Fearless is really hard to become. Ismeal may have the motivation to push himself more to survive.

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    8. I agree with clay. Do you think that this will later drive Ishmael crazy? Or do you think he is stronger than that?

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    9. Just to make a connection- In the movie After Earth there is also a turning point when the character gets sick of living in fear. Do you think that Ishmael will ever be able to consciously decide to not live in fear?

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  3. How do you think that the new group of boys will get along? Like, do you think that they would fight for each other or just give up and run?

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    1. I think that the new group of boys will get along simply by their common circumstances. They have all suffered and that fact has brought them together.

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    2. I think the new group of boys will have a hard time getting along at the start but later they will get along by growing a relationship. I think they would fight for each other because early in the book they were fighting for other people that they did not know. I think that they will create a team and work to gather to get through the hard times.

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    3. I believe that this group of boys have all gone through all of this pain and they all relate in some way. So, they will keep together as a pack until they all reach their families. Also I have a prediction that on their trek to find their loved ones, they will be captured by the rebels and they will have to fight for the rebels, and I still think that they will stick together because the strong power that is forcing them to kill will be unknowingly bringing them together so that they may cope with their actions.

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    4. This new group of boys even though they get along well, do not seem like the kind of people that would rescue each other. They are all from the same village and wish safety upon each other but like on page 62 when Ishmael says "We never talked about our past, especially our families. The few conversations we had that weren't related to our journey were mostly about soccer and school before we resumed out silence." it explains that they do not seem to converse well, making it harder to bond and build a strong enough relationship to want to save one another.

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    5. I agree with Joseph and Avery. I think that the boys will have to get along to survive. Also because of everyone's similar circumstances, and how they can relate to one another will make them trust each other and make them work together and get along.

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  4. On pg. 45 Ishmael is remembering when he and his dad moved into a new house. His father said "I pray to the gods and ancestors that my family will always be together." What do you think this quote means to Ishmael?

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    1. From Ishmael's point of view, his father is most likely a hypocrite. His hope that the family will always be together is ironic, because he already divorced Ishmael's mother. This could cause bitterness in Ishmael towards his father.

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    2. I thin k that his fathers words made him more comforted in a way because he knows that his family will always be together in spirit and he'll always have his family. It also makes him even more distraught about the situation because his father always wanted them to be together and now they're not.

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    3. I agree with Joseph. His father was a hypocrite because he was the one who torn the family apart. I also think this quote is important to Ishmael because he was separated from his family and does not know whether they are dead or alive, so he probably thinks about them a lot.

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    4. I think that Ishmael's father has experienced divorce and has realized that family should not be taken for granted. I disagree with Joseph, I believe that he has a point, but I do not think he is a hypocrite for separating with Ishmael's mother, because if they stayed together for the sake of staying together, it would not be a happy family. When Ishmael's father says this, Ishmael recognizes the love that they have and how that should never change. Looking back on it, Ishmael must feel very sad that he lost his father and that his family truly was broken, but also very happy that his father had that love for him.

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    5. It means a lot to Ishmael. On page 10 of the book he says"Just three days earlier, I had seen my father walking slowly from work. His hard hat was under his arm and his long face was sweating from the afternoon sun. I had not seen him for a while, as another stepmother had destroyed our relationship again. But that morning my father smiled at me. His lips were about to utter something, when my stepmother came out he looked away." I believe this quote is significant in determining why this statement from Ishmael's father means so much to him is because he sees how much his father is working to help support them. Ishmael and his father have been growing distant so this helps cement the idea that Ishmael's father understands that family is not something to be taken fore granted.

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    6. I agree with Joseph in that yes he was the one who separated the family but I also agree with Earl that he was the one who experienced divorce and he may have learned that family is something very precious, but I do not believe that he is a hypocrite because it is not good for a family for a mother and a father to stay together just to keep a "family" together because the idea of family is gone as soon as that happens. Family is sparked by love not by force.

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  5. Also on page 57 Amir starts a paragraph with "Someone had started a rumor about "The Seven Boys," us" What do you think he meant by that? Like are him and the boys the rumored Seven Boys or were they the one who started the rumor?

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  6. What is the significance of Ishmael and Kalako hiding with a family for two weeks? Why do they separate after that?

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    1. Ishmael and Kalako were waiting out of fear. Ishmael separated from Kalako because he was ready to move on from these feelings of fear, while Kalako was not. This is seen in the quote, "I became frustrated with living in fear" page 46.

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  7. On page 69, the book says, "One of the unsettling things about my journey, mentally, physically, and emotionally, was that I wasn't sure when or where it was going to end." If you were in Ishmael's position at this point in the book, how do you think you would feel about the situation?

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    1. I think I would feel the same exact way as Ishmael. Just like Ishmael, I would grow more and more tired of living in fear and always questioning whether I would be able to live another second. In addition, all the emotional, physical, and mental pain makes the journey a lot more frustrating.

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    2. If I was in Ishmael's position I would wonder when it was going to end too. I think I would feel scared and be living in fear if I was going to make it or not.

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    3. If I was in Ismeals shoes, I honestly don't know what I would be thinking. A part of me may be thinking of the very slim possibility of surviving but the rest of me would be thinking of a way to survive.

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  8. Do you think that Kanei is like a new older brother type figure to not just Ishmael but all of the other boys to? How will him being older affect his decisions.

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    1. I don't think that he is a new older brother I think he is more a leader of the group. Him being the leader does help the boys because if they lose their heads due to all the violence there is someone that they can look up to that will keep his cool. I think that him being older could make him get to much "power" and he could rule them instead of being a peaceful leader.

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    2. I think Kanei is seen as an older figure and they all look up to him. When then run into other people he is often the one who has to speak up.

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  9. Throughout these chapters the idea of names keep appearing up. On page 76 Ishmael shares a story about the naming ceremonies and on page 64 he wishes he knew the name of the man who was taking care of him. Why are names important? or are they not important?

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    1. The names are important to Ishmael because he would like to know the names of the ones that have saved his life. Also, when the war is over, I believe that the group of boys would like to go back and thank the ones who had saved their lives for all they have done.

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  10. On page 52, Ishmael says "The most difficult part of being in the forest, was the loneliness. It became unbearable each day. One thing about being lonesome is that you think too much..." The significance of this quote would be that Ishmael is alone in a forest, and it kind of makes you wonder what he thinks about. I think that he might think about his family a lot, especially if he does not know if his family is alive or not. Ishmael is very brave for going into the forest alone. His thoughts are probably eating away at his mind.

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    1. I agree with what you are saying. One of the worst things is being alone especially when you are scared. Being alone only increased his fears and caused him to think of more and more things that could go wrong. That is why I think it is beneficial that he found a group of boys to journey with who have the same that he did.

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    2. I also agree with Annika because the longer that Ishmael is alone, The faster he's gonna go crazy. It's extremely hard to imagine that those kids, at such a young age, have to experience such brutal and violent acts. I think that all this violence will also add to his thoughts of his family and the fear of being alone in a dangerous place.

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  11. When Ismeal Beah was young, before the attack, his grandfather found a medicine that improves your brain capacity. "During each visit, Grandfather always gave us a special medicine that was supposed to enhance the brain's capacity to absorb and retain knowledge." pg. 51. I personally think that that medicine would be really cool and super beneficial to you. Ismeal Beah also writes that one day he drunke that medicine before studying for an exam and on the exam he saw photographs of his textbook and notes clearly. Would you want that medicine? Why would Ismeal put that memory in his memoir?

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    1. Well of course, if I could remember everything that I had learned I would totally take it. But I think that he put that part in his memoir because maybe it shows that because he was taking this medicine stuff he's going to remember a lot more of what is going to happen and what has happened. Or maybe that instead of just remembering what happened he could really remember the details and real horror of everything involved in the book.

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  12. Ishmael says "Every morning I made my own fate by deciding which way I was going to go." Ismael is so young to be making such terrifying decisions. He is being forced to grow up so quickly and make decisions that affect his survival. I think this says something about Ishmael as a hero. He shows bravery and courage even at such a young age.

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    1. I agree with this. I think we really are starting to see a hero come up in Ishmael. If I was in this spot at this age I think I would find it really hard to make the decisions he does everyday. Some of the decisions he makes could mean life or death sometimes.

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  13. On page 55 Ishmael says, "Once again, I was with a group of boys." How do you think that being with a group again will effect Ishmael?

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    1. Ishmael may become afraid and anxious. He has already traveled with a group of boys once and he lost all of them. Ishmael may expect the same thing to happen with this group. It is also possible that Ishmael sees his friends in this new group of boys.

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    2. The trust in teenage boys because of the amount of teenage boy rebels is so low. people may see him as more of a threat if he is with a large group.

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    3. I think it will give Ishmael a sense of protection and comfort. Not being with your family is bad enough so I think it helps Ishmael to be with other people that feel the same way and understand the pain emotionally and mentally that he does.

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    4. After being alone for about a month I think that Ishmael is really happy to be with a group of boys because loneliness can be really scary and I think being with these group of boys will give Ishmael a sense of security more than he had when he was alone. Even though when Ishmael first encounters the boys he doesn't really know if he should join them or not because of all the distrust of 12 year olds he put aside the risk and joined them just so he wouldn't have to be lonely anymore.

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    5. I think that it will help because, being alone in a time like this would be really hard and scary. He has grown to love these boys which might be hard or a bad thing because if something happens to one of them it will be really hard on him. But, in the long run I think it will be helpful to have the support of other people there with him.

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    6. Although being in a group will make others fear them more, I think Ishmael need a group to support him. When he was in the jungle by him self he spent most of his time thinking and trying not to think. The group will help him keep his mind off of some of his dark thoughts.

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    7. I think Ishmael feels safer in a group. I know if I was in this position I would want to be in a group so I would have people to talk to. I think it is better for everyone in the group too because they can work as a team to get food and to fight for the protection of each other.

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    8. I think that being with a group of others will help everyone mentally. If you are alone in a violent world, you would probably go insane after some time because of the fear you're living in. Being with the boys can help them feel safer and more secure. When you are lonely and separated, it's sort of a loss of humanity. Everyone needs people in their lives to talk to or just around. So when all the boys reunite, they get a sense of normality back in their lives.

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  14. On page 86 Ishmael says "I couldn't comprehend what or how I felt."
    How would the death of someone close to you affect your survival skills?
    do you think this would make it harder to survive with so many emotions or would it make you more aware of what the real danger is?

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    1. If there was a death of someone close to me, I too would have no idea how to comprehend my feelings. Of course I would be in mourning but I think that I would be in such shock that I wouldn't believe that person was actually gone. I think it would affect my survival skills just because of that shock I would be in and I wouldn't know what to and I don't think I could move on. So yes, I think it would make it harder for me to survive because of all the emotions racing around in my head.

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    2. I think that the emotions will make anyone have really dumb ideas. When things like this happen the emotions overwhelm you and you can't think straight. The emotions will fog up many skills including survival skills and your ability to judge what you should do and what you shouldn't do.

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    3. I think it all depends on the person whether the person is emotionally unstable or emotionally strong. Most people would like to believe that they could be strong and help with survival, but in reality most people break down and fall apart.

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    4. I think that it would make you more aware and more careful because it could happen to you. I think it would make it hard to survive but it could also be a motivator because you would want to get through the hard times for the loved ones that you have lost.

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  15. If you were Ishmael, would you go with the rest of the boys or continue to live on your own?

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    1. While I would be suspicious of this group of boys and not very trusting, I would go with them because of my desperation for a return to society.

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    2. In that situation it would be comforting to be with other boys. It may even keep me sane, but it is much easier to find food on your own so i might abandon the other group when supplies run out.

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    3. I would go with the boys because loneliness would only contribute to the mental pain that you're being put through as a twelve year old boy in war zone. Having companions as we have talked about before are what make heroes. Everyone needs a shoulder to lean on and help from others and I think Ishmael would be a lot less powerful and it would be more difficult to survive without the guidance of others.

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    4. I would go with the group. Even though I wouldn't be completely comfortable with the group but I would rather be with a group of people because I guess you could be able to have a better chance of survival.

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    5. If I were Ishmael I would stay alone just because of my ability to be successful independently. I also would be very nervous traveling into towns with a group of boys that are feared because of what the rebels have made them. When Junior, Ishmael and the rest of his friends traveled into a town and they were brought to the chief because they were thought to be spies or rebels. I think that would scare me into joining a group because it would be easier to blend in if you weren't in a giant group.

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    6. I would continue with the boys because, I would need support from other people. I think if Ishmael knows that he has other people there with him he may feel like, he has something to live for and it gives him hope that he can get through this hard time. And I think that, just having people there going through the same thing you are going through would help emotionally.

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    7. If I was in Ishmael's position, I would go ahead with the boys, because being alone would make me go insane. Being alone means that you only have yourself to talk to, and your thoughts would really get to you. I would need the group to have a distraction from my own thoughts.

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  16. On page 61, "There were tears in my eyes, but I was unable to cry because I was to thirsty to make a sound." I think that Ishmael is in shock, why? This quote has a lot of ideas, if this is significant, what is your interpretation? Why would this sentence be included in the book or how is it significant?

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  17. Can the same things that make you stronger also kill you inside?

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    1. Yes. The things that bring you pain, will make you stronger and wiser in life.

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    2. Yes, everyone learns and grows from situations differently. Ishmael is battling mental and physical exhaustion and pain but is continuing to learn tactics to survive and maturity to be on his own while feeling the pain that he feels.

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    3. Yes, Because in life you have pain and you learn how to overcome things witch makes you stronger but in the process you get hurt in the inside.

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  18. "I pressed my fingers on my eyelids to hold back the tears and wished that I could have my family back together again." (p.45) Do you think that Ishmael's pain is caused by not knowing if his family is dead or alive?

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    1. Yes, Ishmael is filled with grief because he hesitates to move on. His uncertainty about their condition has caused him to be torn between accepting their death and moving on, and continuing to desperate hope to see them again.

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    2. Partially. I think some of it is that he doesn't know but also because he just wants them to be there with him, so he doesn't have to feel like he's doing this alone.

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    3. There are two things that I think Ishmael's tears could be coming from. One being that Ismael wishes that he wouldn't have to witness the events that he has experienced in the pas few months and that his life was back to the way it was. The second being that he really is worried that his parents are dead. Ultimately I believe that both of these situations are pushing on Ishmael and they are driving him to insanity.

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  19. How do you think you would handle being alone for five days walking in a forest like Ishmael did in chapter 7?

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    1. I think that because of what I had seen of the war I would be very paranoid. I would most likely go insane and think that everyone was out to get me, even children. I would not handle it well.

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    2. If put into the same situation as Ishmael in chapter 7 it would be hard to do anything beside keep moving or dying in the forest. The thing that makes Ishmael's experience in the forest different is that he is constantly on the run from rebels and in a constant state of fear. After seeing the things hes has seen the only thing that would keep me going is the hope of safety or finding family.

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    3. I think I would struggle a lot and become very lonely and lost. I would be confused and I honestly think I would become numb. I just walk and not have very many thoughts and the only thing I would be able to think about is, getting to safe place and seeing my family again.

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  20. On page 49, Ishmael writes, "I walked for two days without sleeping. I only stopped at streams to drink water. I felt as if somebody was after me. Everything felt awkwardly brutal." Do you believe Ishmael was becoming a little crazy? Do you think the loneliness of his walk had something to do with it?

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    1. Well of course you would go crazy if you were by yourself that long. Its like the Lord of the Flies and those boys started to go crazy also within 2 weeks or something crazy. I am not surprised that when he meets the boys he is scared and unfamiliar. "I began to realize how uncomfortable I was around people."pg 55

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    2. I do not believe it is the loneliness that is driving him crazy but more the fear of getting killed or recruited. Loneliness is easily put into this in a way that shows that maybe being alone causes him to feel immediately threatened because there is nothing to save him or care for him.

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    3. I do think that that is the case. Ishmael is alone for so long and he is experiencing these horrible events. He is having to cope by himself. I really don't think that anyone at that age can be alone for that long while seeing what he has seen can stay completely sane for a long period of time. Or any period of time for that matter.

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  22. Ishmael says "I couldn't comprehend what or how I felt" (pg 86). If you were in this situation, do you think you would be able to physically and emotionally handle this?

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  23. I have noticed that Ishmael's memories have a significance in this story. This is evident through excerpts from the book such as this "When I was very little, my father used to say, 'If you are alive, there is hope for a better day and something good to happen. If there is nothing good left in the destiny of a person, he or she will die.'" The significance of these memories is that Ishmael's memories are the driving force of his will to live. His parents and his loved ones tell him these inspiring quotes and they help Ishmael throughout the tough times in his life.

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  24. On page 80 it states "The moon hid behind the clouds to avoid seeing what was happening." Why do you think the moon is significant to Ishmael and his group so far?

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    1. The moon is a representation of Ishmael's innocence. The moon hiding behind the clouds to avoid exposing itself to the violence preserves its innocence and allows Ishmael to still view it as innocent.

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    2. The moon seems to be a sense of comfort and peace for Ishmael. Back on page 17 when he is looking at the moon, Ishmael says "I wanted to find out why it was so appealing and likable." Based on this quote I think when the moon is hidden they feel less safe. Also their source of light at night is taken from them and they have to work around that.

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    3. I feel as though the moon is a representation of how Ishmael feels and since he is scared and tired right now the moon is hiding behind clouds. When Saidu dies there is no moon that night.

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    4. I feel like everything in Ishmeals eyes are hiding from him and/or the world. Not only on page 80 when the moon hid but also on page 50, when Ismeal was in the forest and the trees branches were so think that he couldn't see the sky. But to answer your question I think the moon might represent Ismeal and his groups freedom. When the moon hids behind the clouds, you know its there and sometimes can barely see it. In Ismeals shoes, freedom has a very low possibility of becoming true. You know what freedom is and you hope you can achieve it but it will be hard to become free. on page 10 an old man stated "we must all strive to be like the moon." Why would any one want to strive to be like the moon? I came up with the answer of people want to strive to be like the moon because when the sun is out people whine that it is too hot and when it rains people say it is too cold and wet, but when the moon is out, no one complains. They are not hot, they are not so could they will complain and it is no too light out.

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  25. Do you think that things are going to get a lot worse before they get better? if so, then why?

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    1. I think it is going to get a lot worse because we haven't gotten to the climax of the book. The label "The Boy Soldier" in my mind, tells me that it probably won't get better for a while.

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    2. Worse. Because it seems like everything is just going down hill right now and from the chapters before we know that he does become a boy soldier and I think that, that is just a really bad thing to happen to him. And I mean becoming a boy soldier can't make things much better. Or maybe it will seem to because he'll just shut his emotions off and only focus on the violence of being a soldier.

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    3. I do believe that things are going to get worse. Just like the commonly known quote, "It has to get worse before it can get better." At this point in the book, it has gotten to a point that his situation is horrible but I think it could get even worse than this. I think that once it does get worse, it will get much better. At the beginning of the book, Ishmael is in New York City and has started a new life which is foreshadowing that it will get somewhat better.

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  26. On page 55 Ishmael says "Once again I was with a group of boys. This time there were seven of us. I knew this was going to be a problem, but I didn't want to be by myself anymore" What makes living in each situation harder?

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    1. Well think about it this way. If you have seven brothers and sisters vs four brothers and sisters you're going to have a harder time splitting the food rations and getting along and getting everyone on the same page with the same ideas on everything.

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    2. The thing that makes that situation harder is the fact that he is in a group of people that are not trusted because of their age. I think this scares Ishmael but he would rather be in a group and not alone. It also makes things harder because now he is responsible for more than just himself like when one of the boys dies (I forgot his name) they feel responsible for his death and they don't leave him and they give him a proper burial. Also having a bigger groups means that they have to split up the food which makes hunger an even bigger issue. So overall the problems have just gotten worse by him joining the group.

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  27. To answer Ms. Lecliare's question, I am starting to become desensitized to all the violence because I am starting to get used to the culture of Ishmael's life. There is so much violence that I am starting to just be able to read through it without stopping and seeing how bad it really is.

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    1. I also felt like this when I was reading. I think that Beah does this on purpose, to show us the state of mind that he went through when he was in the jungle and living through all the violence. I think that he was getting used to death and by this being a piece of non-fiction, he forces us as readers to get used to the fact that he faced this, so we can see the true journey without being shocked by the violence.

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  28. In chapter 7, why do you think that the rebels burned all of the houses?

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    1. I think that the rebels burnt down all of the houses as a sign of who they are and what they are trying to accomplish. They are causing so much violence, destruction, and death and I think them burning down everything in their path just a warning sign of anyone who may pass by the villages after the rebels leave and move into another village.

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    2. The rebels feel satisfaction and power when they destroy other people's lives and things. Killing other people and destroying everything they have gives them a feeling of power, that no one else is as powerful or could do as much damage as them.

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    3. I think they burned down all the houses because it was their way to show rebellion and actions speak louder than words. I think that the idea of them being able to do what they want had a huge impact on them.

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    4. I believe that the reason the rebels burned down the houses was actually just to make it harder for those who escaped to return. As it may also show their power, by burning down a village it makes people desperate for food and shelter and therefore more likely to turn to becoming a child soldier or gathering around the remaining villages to make it easier for another attack.

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    5. I think the rebels burn all the houses down because it shows power and it scares the people that lived in them to never mess with the rebels again. I think If they burned my house down I would kinda see them as having more power than me.

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  29. What do you think that Ishmael fears more? Death or becoming a child soldier?

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    1. I think he fears both ideas equally, they both could/will result in death. I think he would rather become a boy soldier because it gives him a second chance. Although they are both horrible.

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    2. I think in a way he would fear both death and becoming a child soldier. I think he would fear death more because I think that is something everyone fears in life and I think that he has more hope than to just die. On the contrary, I think he fears becoming a child soldier because he's going to have to kill innocent people just like he's seen all those innocent people get killed during all the attacks.

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    3. I also agree with Lindsay because in my mind, death and becoming a child soldier are equally on the same level. Becoming a soldier basically means that your life is being taken away. You won't be able to do what other kids do because you will be trapped under control of somebody else. In this situation, becoming a child soldier and death are the same, so he will fear both equally.

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  30. In chapter 7, The Imam gave he gave his life to protect the lives of the others by not telling the Rebels where everyone went. Do you think that this shows the imam being a hero?

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    1. Yes of course it does. He gave up a chance to find his family and live again for a bunch of people that he might not even know very well.

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  31. On page 68 Ishmael and his group are set free by the Chief and the rebels once again for being "harmless kids". Do you think that being children is the only thing that has kept them alive so far?

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    1. Yes. Also the fact that they say they are part of a rap group. I don't think these civilians are interested in hurting anyone but they are so fearful for there own life and they feel like there is no one they can trust, even innocent kids.

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  32. In the very beginning of the book it is told that he is going to be a boy soldier. How long until this happens? Would you predict that that is going to be the climax of the story?

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    1. He could become a boy soldier at anytime. He could become one in the next chapter or near the end. I think he will become a boy soldier pretty soon.

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    2. I think that Ishmael will be running a little bit longer, but then the rebels will capture him. I think that the climax of the story is when Ishmael is actually a soldier and when he goes out and starts to follows the order to kill.

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    3. Even though the book is called "The memoirs of a boys soldier" I believe that the climax of the book is between him becoming a child soldier or him escaping from that life he is forced into.

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  33. The cultural aspect of chapter seven provides a very fresh perspective. It shows an aspect of Ishmael's life that was previously unknown, and gives the reader a break from the violence. It also provides Ishmael with a break from the violence as well.

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  34. Who do you consider the "leader" of Ishmael and his group of travelers? Why?

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  35. How have the things that Ishmael's family told him as he has grown up helped him survive this journey?

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    1. I think what Ishmaels family has told him has really given him support through the hard times that he is going through. I also believe that he is holding on to his family to keep him sane. With all that is going on his ideals of his family is all he has left of his home.

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  36. On the first page Ishmael mentions the moon. This is one of the many times that he mentions the moon in the book. What do you think that the significance of the moon is?

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    1. It is a representation of Ishmael's childhood innocence as seen by his description of the moon on page 17. He says that it feels like he still has a part of his innocence because he can still see the same images in the moon.

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    2. I think the moon represents a symbol or peace and hope. Every night the moon is there to guide Ishmael and his group, it is something that will never go away and that give Ishmael a feeling or hope and peace to find his family again and go back to his normal life. The moon has remained the same through all of this war, it has remained peaceful and still.

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  37. On page 80, it states, "One afternoon, while we were searching for food in a deserted village, a crow fell out of the sky. It wasn't dead, but it was unable to fly." Do you think this quote is foreshadowing something? Is the crow some kind of symbol?

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  38. Would you rather become a rebel and potentially have to kill loved ones or die a brutal death? Why?

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    1. I think I would rather die a brutal death. I know it would be painful and horrible but I would never want to have to live with the guilt that I had killed innocent people. I would rather die with no guilt than having to live with it.

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    2. If you die a brutal death you didn't stand up to anything, but if you are in the rebels I feel as though you could escape as Ishmael die or survive it out til the war ends.

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  39. Why do the boys rely so much on silence in chapter 10?

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    1. The boys aren't really relying on silence I think that they don't really have much to talk about and silence just lets them think to themselves and gives them some peace of mind throughout this whole situation. It also gives Ishmael the ability to feel alone while at the same time with people.

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  40. On page 81 a crow falls from the sky and the boys are deciding if they should eat it or not. Does this bird symbolize anything?

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  42. Do you think that Ishmael's number one thought is his family?

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  43. This is my extended post for missing fishbowl on Tuesday November 19 for Orchestra a concert.Do you think that things are going to get a lot worse before they get better? if so, then why? This was asked by Cassie, I personally think in everyone's life thing have to get worse before they get better. So in these chapters Ishmael is living in the forest. In Chapter 8 on page 50 Ishmael finds a grass that he uses for to makes soap. To growing up in Mali we had a plant like that which the Malians kids used to blow bubbles it may have been the same plant. I'm not sure if they are the same but it would cool if it was. So why is the Bra Spider called that, because that physical charismatics of the spider don't relate to its name at all. On page 53 Ishmael sees wild pigs and has to run from then. My connection to this is when living in Mali my dad saw a wild boar or pig ruining across the road. Its a really good thing the pig didn't hit our car. At this point in the book how many mile has he walked ?

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