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For many high school readers, realistic fiction is a genre that maximizes relatability and engagement with literature. “Everyday Use” by Alice Walker is a story about self-image, generational clashes, cultural conflicts, and more. With this bundle of high school resources covering “Everyday Use,” English teachers will save valuable time at home without sacrificing rigor in the classroom. Included are the following: a multiple choice, plot-based quiz; a worksheet composed of rigorous close reading analysis questions; and answer keys. Materials are delivered in printable Word Document and PDF formats. 

By completing the quiz, students will demonstrate knowledge of the following:

  • Setting
  • A traumatic incident in the family’s past
  • The reason Dee does not live with her mother and sister
  • Maggie’s engagement
  • Maggie’s emotional response to the return of her sister
  • The reasons for Maggie’s self-consciousness
  • Mama’s daydreaming
  • A significant change in Dee’s life
  • The nickname for Dee’s boyfriend
  • Items in which Dee takes apparent interest
  • The reason Mama will not permit Dee to take the items
  • Dee’s parting words for her sister
  • Mama and Maggie’s actions at the end of the story

By completing the close reading analysis worksheet, students will:

  • Identify what the text states explicitly and implicitly
  • Analyze the narrator’s sense of self-image
  • Explore the author’s use of language to convey a sense of realism
  • Apply knowledge of various literary devices including but not limited to dialect, syncope, and malapropism
  • Contrast how two characters perceive the concept of heritage
  • Analyze why the narrator takes offense to another character’s actions and evaluate whether her reaction is justified
  • Examine how point of view shapes the readers’ understanding of Dee’s character
  • Apply objectivity in order to infer a character’s true motivations
  • Articulate the greater significance of a given detail (Maggie’s smile)
  • Support claims and ideas with reasoned thinking and relevant textual evidence
  • Write ideas with clarity, accuracy, and precision