Procedures:                                                                                                                Print Questions: .docx / .doc


1) Read the novel excerpts and the related texts together in groups or as a class

2) Clarify meaning in groups or as a class. Student/Teacher reads. Student summarizes

3) In pairs or in groups, discuss the textual content and quotations

4) In pairs or in groups, discuss the conversation questions (include your own questions)

5) As a class, take turns using the conversation questions to expand your ideas

Novels 112 ~ Of Mice and Men ~ John Steinbeck ~

~ TLW ~ Readers Club ~ Novels for Discussion ~

Courtesy of  Sparknotes



Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They donĄŻt belong no place. . . . With us it ainĄŻt like that. We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us. We donĄŻt have to sit in no bar room blowinĄŻ in our jack jusĄŻ because we got no place else to go. If them other guys gets in jail they can rot for all anybody gives a damn. But not us.

-John Steinbeck , Of Mice and Men

SĄŻpose they was a carnival or a circus come to town, or a ball game, or any damn thing.Ą± Old Candy nodded in appreciation of the idea. Ą°WeĄŻd just go to her,Ą± George said. Ą°We wouldnĄŻt ask nobody if we could. JusĄŻ say, ĄźWeĄŻll go to her,ĄŻ anĄŻ we would. JusĄŻ milk the cow and sling some grain to the chickens anĄŻ go to her.

-John Steinbeck , Of Mice and Men


A guy sets alone out here at night, maybe readinĄŻ books or thinkinĄŻ or stuff like that. Sometimes he gets thinkinĄŻ, anĄŻ he got nothing to tell him whatĄŻs so anĄŻ what ainĄŻt so. Maybe if he sees somethinĄŻ, he donĄŻt know whether itĄŻs right or not. He canĄŻt turn to some other guy and ast him if he sees it too. He canĄŻt tell. He got nothing to measure by. I seen things out here. I wasnĄŻt drunk. I donĄŻt know if I was asleep. If some guy was with me, he could tell me I was asleep, anĄŻ then it would be all right. But I jusĄŻ donĄŻt know.

-John Steinbeck , Of Mice and Men

I seen hundreds of men come by on the road anĄŻ on the ranches, with their bindles on their back anĄŻ that same damn thing in their heads . . . every damn one of ĄŻemĄŻs got a little piece of land in his head. AnĄŻ never a God damn one of ĄŻem ever gets it. Just like heaven. EverĄŻbody wants a little piece of lanĄŻ. I read plenty of books out here. Nobody never gets to heaven, and nobody gets no land.

-John Steinbeck , Of Mice and Men

A water snake glided smoothly up the pool, twisting its periscope head from side to side; and it swam the length of the pool and came to the legs of a motionless heron that stood in the shallows. A silent head and beak lanced down and plucked it out by the head, and the beak swallowed the little snake while its tail waved frantically.

-John Steinbeck , Of Mice and Men



Click here for AuthorĄŻs Biography, Plot Overview, and Explanation of Quotes courtesy of Sparknotes


~ General Conversation Questions ~


Group A


1) What is the difference between a theme, a motif, and a symbol. Click here for details.

2) In this work, red-winged birds are symbols of freedom. Describe a symbol related to your community.

3) One motif used is migration within a country. Tell about someone who has moved from their hometown.

4) Orphans are another motif. Are there many in your community/country? Explain their difficulties.

5) A third motif is music. How has music evolved over the years in your country? Does it affect culture?


Group B


1) Violence is a main theme in this work. How can violence be passed across generations? Explain.

2) Racial violence is a related theme. Has your country ever faced such history. How can it affect culture?

3) Motherhood is another main theme. What are the various roles of mothers in your country? Describe.

4) The notion of a Ą°motherlandĄ± is related. How important is this notion to the people in your country?

5) Talk about the notion of Ą°raceĄ±. What is it? Does it really exist? What is a Ą°social constructĄ±?


Challenge: Make your own follow-up questions and discuss them.




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