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The Miracle Worker: Questions to Consider

  1. Before Annie's arrival, how did Helen's disabilities and behavior affect the Keller family? Be specific in discussing the Captain, Kate, and James.

  2. Describe Annie Sullivan. What kind of young woman was she? Cite examples from the play to support your views.

  3. Describe Captain Keller and Kate. Why do you think they had so much trouble controlling Helen?

  4. How do you think Annie's background, especially her memories of her younger brother, Jimmie, influenced her behavior as an adult? Explain.

  5. What are James's and Aunt Ev's roles in the story? Why do you think the author included them?

  6. Why wouldn't Annie let Helen take food from her (Annie's) plate? Why was Annie's battle with Helen at the table so important?

  7. Why was it necessary for Helen to be completely dependent on Annie during her learning? What was the Captain's reaction to Annie's demand that she stay alone with Helen at the garden house? Why do you think he finally gave in?

  8. When Helen and Annie returned from the garden house, why do you think Helen "tested" Annie and her parents at the table? What happened? In your opinion, was Annie right?

  9. Why do you think "water," "wah, wah," was the first word Helen recognized?

  10. The characters undergo profound changes by the end of the play. Explain how Helen, Annie, the Captain, and James changed.

Excerpted from English Teacher's Great Books Activities Kit.

English Teacher's Great Books Activities Kit
by Gary Robert Muschla

More than 180 reproducible student activities for teaching reading and writing skills, based on great literature that covers various genres, themes, and cultures.


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