“The Bear Boy” by Joseph Bruchac

Report
“THE BEAR BOY”
BY JOSEPH BRUCHAC
ANTICIPATION GUIDE:
WHAT IS A PUEBLO?
PUEBLO REFERS TO THE VILLAGE-DWELLING
NATIVE AMERICANS OF THE SOUTHWESTERN
UNITED STATES. THEY ARE MADE OF ADOBE
AND CONTAIN HUNDREDS OF ROOMS.
WHAT IS A MEDICINE MAN?
This is a medicine man from the
Navajo tribe of the southwestern
U.S.
Medicine Men in Native American
cultures are believed to have the
magical powers of healing. They
are also referred to as “shaman.”
Medicine Men understand the
connection between the natural
world and the spirit world and help
to bridge the gap.
ANTICIPATION GUIDE WHAT IS A CANYON?
A canyon is a land
form that has a
deep valley
with steep sides,
often
with a stream
flowing through it.
ANTICIPATION GUIDE: WHAT IS A MESA?
A mesa is a land formation, less extensive than a
plateau, having steep walls and a relatively flat
top and common in arid and semiarid parts of
the southwestern U.S. and Mexico.
“THE BEAR BOY” BY JOSEPH BRUCHAC
DIRECTIONS
Read through Questions 1-11 first.
2. Highlight key words in each question.
3. Then, as you read the story, highlight and
make notes where the answers may be in
the selection.
4. Circle the correct answers on your answer
sheet.
Instructor: Stop here! Do not proceed until
class is ready to review answers.
1.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS TO # 1
In Paragraph # 4, the author introduces the
setting and begins to present _________ to
create tension in the story.
A. Motivation
B. Analysis
C. Conflict *
D. Connections
*C The author makes the reader understand
people’s fear of bears by saying that anyone
who follows in footprints may be killed. Also,
Kuo-Haya is in terrible danger because his
father has not warned him.
1.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 2
2. Based only on Paragraphs 5 and 6 and background
knowledge of bears, what can the reader predict will
happen to Kuo-Haya?
A. The mother bear will defend her cubs by attacking KuoHaya.
B. Kuo-Haya will run away from this danger.
C. The cubs will attack Kuo-Haya.
D. The mother bear will play with Kuo-Haya.
* A. If the reader only focuses on the wording in these
paragraph, it is obvious the other answer choices can be
eliminated. “ . . . A shadow came over them. Kuo-Haya
looked up and saw the mother bear standing over them.”
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 3
3. What kind of relationship does Kuo-Haya and his father
have at the beginning of the selection?
A.
B.
C.
D.
They have a close relationship and spend a lot of time
together.
They have a mediocre relationship when the father is
around, but the father is gone sometimes.
* They do not have a close relationship because the
father has not taught the son many things.
They have a typical, father and son relationship according
to Navajo tradition.
*C. Kuo-Haya’s father has neglected him. As a result, KuoHaya is timid and shy around other boys his age and
spends time alone.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 4
4. What does Kuo-Haya first do when he sees the
bear cubs?
A.
B.
C.
D.
He runs away to safety.
He climbs a tree to watch them.
He goes to get some other boys to see them, too.
* He approaches the bears and plays with them.
*D. The answer to this can be found and should be
easily recalled by the reader.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 5
5. How is Kuo-Haya’s life with the bears different than
his life in the village?
A. In the village, Kuo-Haya is only known for
intelligence.
B. With the bears, Kuo-Haya learns to be strong.
C. In the village, Kuo-Haya is not neglected by people
or animals.
D. With the bears, Kuo-Haya forgets how to speak and
write.
*B. The mother bear encourages Kuo-Haya, and he
feels like he belongs with the bears. In the village,
he feels like an outsider.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 6
6. What advice does the medicine man offer the
father?
A. He needs to forget Kuo-Haya as his son because his
son has another family.
B. He needs to let Kuo-Haya return home whenever he
is ready to do so.
C. He needs to destroy the bears in order to safely
bring back Kuo-Haya.
D. * He needs to bring back Kuo-Haya but in a way that
will not harm the bears.
*D. The reader should be able to recall this answer
from the story or go back and reread this part.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 7
7. How does seeing a bee help the father decide how to
get his son back?
A. * It gives the father the idea to use honey as part of
his plan to talk to his son.
B. The bee leads the father to his son and the bears.
C. The father can use the beehive to distract the bears
and get his son back.
D. The father will provoke the bees to swarm and
attack the bears.
*A The answer can be recalled after reading, or the
reader can go back and double-check if unsure.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 8
8. Based on the characteristics of “Bear Boy,” what
genre is it?
A.
B.
C.
D.
Autobiography
* Folk tale
Essay
Myth
* B. The reader may use the process of elimination. All
other choices are obviously incorrect. “Bear Boy” is
a Navajo legend and is also considered a folktale.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS # 9
9. Which of the following best states the theme of “Bear
Boy?”
A. Nature will always conquer humankind.
B. Friends in nature are greater than family.
C. * Parents have a responsibility to love and to teach
their children.
D. Children have a responsibility to listen to their
parents at all times.
*C The other answers are not relevant to the overall
message of the story. Children of any culture learn
how to be successful members of society from their
parents.
QUESTIONS/ANSWERS #10
10. Which of the following events in “Bear Boy”
demonstrates the Kuo-Haya is timid?
A. Kuo-Haya reaches the age when he will be initiated
into manhood.
B. Kuo-Haya learns from his father how to be a great
runner.
C. Kuo-Haya looks down and slips away when other
boys wrestle.
D. Kuo-Haya walks into the bear’s cave when his father
calls him.
* C These actions show that Kuo-Maya lacks the
confidence that other boys his age have.
QUESTION/ANSWERS # 11
11. The resolution of “The Bear Boy” occurs when
A. The mother bear defends Kuo-Haya and outwits
Kuo-Haya’s father
B. Kuo-Haya returns to the village and shows he is no
longer timid
C. Kuo-Haya’s father promises that he will always be
friends with the bears.
D. Kuo-Haya follows the bear tracks and finds
happiness with the bears.
*B The resolution of a story always shows how the
conflict is resolved at the end. Here, Kuo-Haya’s life
has changed by the events in the tale.

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