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A stunning modern-day fairy tale from acclaimed author Anne Ursu

Once upon a time, Hazel and Jack were best friends. But that was before he stopped talking to her and disappeared into a forest with a mysterious woman made of ice. Now it's up to Hazel to go in after him. Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen's "The Snow Queen," Breadcrumbs is a story of the struggle to hold on, and the things we leave behind.

Curriculet Details
85 Questions
93 Annotations
3 Quizzes

This free digital curriculum for elementary school students contains interactive videos exploring imagery and theme, as well as annotations describing figurative language, plot structure, and characterization. Students will explore the themes of friendship and loyalty. The Common Core aligned questions, answers and quizzes in this free online unit will increase student engagement in the book while supporting reading comprehension.

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Homework #5

The author is describing a snow fall that happens overnight in a way that makes us imagine it as whimsical and magical, setting the scene and mood for the reader.  
Based on the setting's description, what type of magic might the reader be expecting?  
An allusion is a reference to an outside piece of literature, artwork, music, etc. Here, the author is referencing The Chronicles of Narnia, which is a popular series of fantasy novels written by C. S. Lewis.  (This annotation contains an image)
"Thwack" is an example of onomatopoeia. Onomatopoeia is a word that imitates the sound it's describing. The pronunciation of the word can be heard in the video below.  (This annotation contains a video)
A dumbwaiter is similar to an elevator, but it is much smaller and used to transport groceries or packages between floors. In old houses, they are lifted and lowered by pulleys, but in the video below, this man shows you how modern dumbwaiters work.  (This annotation contains a video)
What does polyphony mean?Make a connection between the definition and the root words in the word polyphony.   
This passage might make the reader think, "what happened to the new station wagon?" This passage could be foreshadowing information we do not know yet.  
Briefly describe a time when you felt like you didn't belong, or that you felt like an outsider the way that Hazel did when she first got to school.   
The fact that Hazel's father no longer lives with the family, in addition to the story about the new station wagon no longer being driven, allows the reader to infer that Hazel's parents are no longer together.  
What does abdication or abdicate mean?  
The author is describing how Jack used his eyebrows to communicate with Hazel. Jack waggling his eyebrows probably looks similar to the GIF below.  (This annotation contains an image)
Hazel is referencing another piece of literature in her description of Mrs. Jacobs. This reference is called a(n) 
This story is being told in the third person point of view, which means that a narrator is telling the story. Although a narrator is telling the story, we are focused on Hazel's thoughts and feelings. Therefore, this story is being told in the third person limited point of view.  
Hazel's thoughts have taken her on a journey to remember Susan and how she is adopted. Hazel is compelled to tell Susan that she is not alone in her experience. What does this say about Hazel's personality?  

Homework #6

What type of figurative language is being used here?   
The first sentence of this book is "It snowed right before Jack stopped talking to Hazel," which leads us to think that Jack doesn't always come back. The fact that the readers know that Jack doesn't always come back but Hazel does not is called dramatic irony. The audience knows more than the characters.  
This is an allusion to the novel, Alice in Wonderland, where several characters have a tea party.  
Here is some information about Joe Mauer, the baseball player Jack mentioned.  (This annotation contains a link)
Using context clues, which of the following is NOT a synonym for affront? 
What type of figurative language is the word "thwack"? 
This statement makes the reader think "Why doesn't Jack want to go home?" We can infer from this statement, that Jack may not have a home that is always nice to go back to.  
We have only gotten a description of Adelaide's neighborhood, but what can we infer about her and her family based on this description?  
Horn-rimmed glasses, what Adelaide is wearing, usually have thicker frames. You can see an example in the photo below.  (This annotation contains an image)
The Golden Compass is a fantasy novel by Philip Pullman.  (This annotation contains an image)
Hazel wants to be involved in creating the story with Adelaide and her Uncle Martin. Why might Hazel be enthusiastic about participating?  
Here the author gives us more evidence to support the claim that Jack may not have a perfect home-life.  

Homework #7

What do the following words mean? Put their definitions in your own words. InnocuousCoda 
Tauntaun is a reference to Star Wars. These fictitious creatures were used to travel across snowy environments. You can see a picture of one below.  (This annotation contains an image)
Write a brief summary about what we have just learned regarding Jack's life at home.   
Metaphors are a comparison between two things without using "like" or "as." Here, the author is comparing the field to an ocean of snow, making this a metaphor. Below is a video that helps explain the difference between a metaphor and a simile.  (This annotation contains a video)
What effect does placing a picture between this sentence and the rest of the chapter have on the reader?  
Briefly compare and contrast Jack and Hazel as characters.  
What is the best prediction of who Hazel's mother was on the phone with? 
Hazel has mentioned this "scratchy" feeling several times in this chapter. This scratchy feeling may foreshadow an unpleasant event to come.  
This chapter ends with something bad happening to Jack. This might be the unfortunate event that Hazel's "scratchy" feeling was foreshadowing.  
What do you think has happened to Jack?  

Homework #8

Imagery is when the author describes something so vividly that we can picture it in our minds, or feel what the characters are feeling. Here the author uses imagery to describe how Hazel is feeling when Jack gets taken away hurt. Below is a video that explains imagery further.  (This annotation contains a video)
What does Hazel mean when she says that, "Jack knew the value of an eye patch"?  
"Her legs groaned" is an example of personification, which is a type of figurative language when inanimate objects are given human qualities. Here, Hazel's legs are given the human quality of groaning.  
Although this story is being told from the third-person point of view, it is limited to Hazel's point of view. How does this affect what the readers know about the events of the day?  
Hazel is struggling with an internal conflict. She wants to do what her mother asks of her, but she does not know how. She is also struggling with an external conflict between herself and Tyler and Bobby. Below is a video that explains internal and external conflict more. Think about the different types of conflict Hazel goes through while reading the story.  (This annotation contains a video)
How do you think Jack got glass in his eye?  
The reader has known that Jack will stop talking to Hazel, and these thoughts reveal that Hazel might figure this out soon.  
Below is an image of a plot diagram, which is the structure that most stories follow. After the exposition (the set-up of the story), the readers are often introduced to the conflict or the problem before the story continues to develop in the rising action. Now that Jack is not speaking to Hazel, this is our problem or conflict, and we are now in the rising action of the story.  (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #9

How is the beginning of this chapter different from the rest of the story? 
This story has taken a turn not only in structure, but also in genre. In the first 4 chapters, Hazel's story was realistic fiction. However, with the introduction of Mal and this magical mirror, the genre of this novel switches into fantasy.  
Part of this magical mirror has landed in Jack's eye. Briefly make a prediction on what will happen using quotes from the novel to support your claim.  

Homework #10

The readers have an idea as to why Jack might act like that. When the audience knows more than the characters, what is this called?  
This description of the snowy outdoors contrasts greatly with the description from the beginning of the novel. Think about why this snowy world has become menacing to Hazel.  
The repetition of consonant sounds is a type of figurative language called "alliteration." The best examples of alliteration are tongue twisters.  
Which is the best synonym for accoutrements? 
What does Hazel now understand? Make a brief prediction using evidence from the book.  
Below are examples of snowflakes with hexagonal symmetry like Mrs. Jacobs is discussing with her class.  (This annotation contains an image)
What information does this sentence reveal to the reader about Hazel as a character?  
Hazel is using a metaphor to describe how she felt. She is not actually encased in ice; however, she is comparing how she feels to being encased in ice.  
Which of the following is NOT an example from the text which shows that Jack has changed towards Hazel?  

Homework #11

The point of view has change somewhat in this chapter. Although the story is still being told by a third person narrator, we are limited to Jack's thoughts and feelings. Think about how this changes the story and what we are reading.  
Which side will Jack choose? Make a prediction using evidence from the story.  
Because of the change in point of view, the readers now have more information than Hazel about what is going on with Jack. She believes he is being mean for no reason, but the readers know that the glass in his eye has moved to his heart, and this has changed how he see the world.  
When inanimate objects are given human-like characteristics, this is an example of 
Often authors choose their words carefully because they can have deeper meaning. Here the author chooses to say that the woman was "bringing coldness with her." Coldness can have two definitions: the lack of heat, or the personality trait of being unkind. The author possibly chose this description to introduce the point that not only was the woman cold in temperature, but she could also represent coldness as a personality trait as well.  

Homework #12

What does it mean that Hazel's mother "spoke in bright, shiny words"?  
Below is a video that shows you the five basic positions in ballet that Adelaide is teaching Hazel.  (This annotation contains a video)
Uncle Martin believes that Snowflake Bentley wasn't a scientist, but he analyzed snowflakes in a scientific way. Would you consider Snowflake Bentley a scientist? Why or why not?  
Uncle Martin and Hazel are discussing the various reasons why Jack has changed his personality overnight. Why would this be considered dramatic irony?  
This statement from Uncle Martin seems important. What he says here could be considered the one of the themes of the story. Watch the video below for more information about theme.  (This annotation contains a video)
Section 1 Quiz 

Homework #13

The author uses a lot of figurative language and imagery in order to describe the setting in which Jack and the white witch are traveling.  
What do you think is happening with the witch and Jack? Use textual evidence to support your answer.  

Homework #14

A leper is someone who has leprosy, which is a disease known since biblical times. It causes disfigured sores on the skin. You can see an image below. (This annotation contains an image)
The comment that "footprints were very interesting and should be studied closely," would be considered verbal irony because 
This odd behavior of Tyler's could be foreshadowing an event that will occur later in the story.  
Hazel is comparing how she feels to this situation of having someone give you a dandelion when your heart is poisoned. This comparison could be considered a(n) 
We as readers have not gotten a lot of information about Mikaela until this chapter. Briefly describe her as a character.  
"Tesser" is an allusion to the fantasy novel, A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L'Engle. It means to travel in time and space.  (This annotation contains an image)
Which is NOT an example of how Hazel has changed since Jack's accident or disappearance?  
The poison that the author is referencing here is not actual poison, but the poison that Hazel used to describe how she was feeling. The fact that the "poison lifted" means that she is feeling back to her old self again.  
Most parents would be extremely worried that their child has gone missing. What can we predict has happened to make Mr. and Mrs. Campbell not worry about Jack being gone?  

Homework #15

We can predict that Jack did not actually go to live with his Aunt Bernice because Hazel and her mother explain their logic. Her mother did not know about Jack having an elderly aunt, and she thought it would be strange that he would miss school and take care of someone elderly as an eleven year old. These points make it more evident that he is not actually taking care of an Aunt Bernice.  
"And there was no witch [...] that had caused the change in him. He had just changed. He just didn't like her anymore." This passage is an example of  
The author writes that "the scar on the table blurred." Think about why might the scar become blurred during this conversation with her mother. The author is not coming out and telling us exactly what is going on, so as readers we must take what we know and infer what is happening. We know that sad conversations can make us tear up and cause our vision to get blurred; therefore, we can infer that Hazel has started to tear up because of the upsetting news from her mother.  
Give an example of both internal and external conflict that Hazel encounters in this chapter, and how you can tell the difference.  
The author's description of Hazel going to the counselor's makes the reader think that she may be uncomfortable. Mrs. Jacob's makes it seem like a secret, the office is down a corridor she has never been to before, and Mr. Lewis looks "at her as if she were doing something very peculiar." Do you think Hazel is going to be very comfortable during her session with the counselor?  
This is a summary of what Hazel thinks adults think of her. How does the fact that we hear the story from Hazel's point of view change how the reader sees Hazel as a person?  
"Frankly" means honestly.  

Homework #16

What is Hazel implying by stating that "Hazel was surprised that he did not mention sticker charts"? 
As you continue to read, think about how this conversation propels the events of the story forward through the rising action.  
What does Tyler mean when he says "you know how you are…"? 
Hazel is having an internal conflict right now because she is debating whether or not to believe Tyler. She does not want to believe him based on how he treated her before, but she also thinks he may be telling the truth because of how serious he was when telling her.  
What is the best synonym for sentries? 
The climax of the story can either be the point with the most action, or it can be the point in the story that changes everything. Hazel's decision to go into the woods after Jack is being described as a irreversible decision; therefore, this could be considered the climax of the story. Below is a diagram of the plot map as a reminder.  (This annotation contains an image)

Homework #17

What is the purpose of this chapter right before the beginning of Part II?  

Homework #19

The author uses clear imagery and sensory words to help describe the woods. She used imagery and sensory words to describe the snow fall in the beginning of Part I as well.  
All of the books Hazel is alluding to are fantasy novels. She is remarking that because she is familiar with fantasy novels, embarking on this journey should be easy.  
Why do you think Hazel feels that she should talk to the wolf? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.  
Hazel has encountered ravens in the woods. A picture of what ravens look like can be seen below.  (This annotation contains an image)
The cake with a sign is an allusion to which book?  
A woodsman is a popular fairy tale character. There is a woodsman in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and also in Little Red Riding Hood. Below is an image of what a woodsman might look like.  (This annotation contains an image)
This first chapter of Part II is very different from the chapters in Part I. What is the most dramatic change?  

Homework #20

A ravine is a landform that is much narrower than a canyon, but has been worn away by erosion caused by a stream. A picture of a ravine can be seen below.  (This annotation contains an image)
The first woman suggests that because Hazel does not know her original name, that she might not know who she is. Do you agree or disagree? Why?  
Hazel has realized that these woman are very similar to the Fates in Greek Mythology. The Fates determine your destiny and fate by weaving cloth from your yarn or string. Below is a video that may help you understand more about the Fates.  (This annotation contains a video)
Imagine that this story was being told in the third person omniscient, meaning that the reader had access to every character's thoughts. Which of the following is NOT an example of how might this conversation between Hazel and the Fates be different for the reader if the point of view was third person omniscient?  
Hazel has encountered plenty of conflict in Part II of this story. Specifically, she has encountered Man vs. Nature conflict because she has come across wolves and has gotten turned around.  
This swan skin is giving her hope that she might be able to change into something that might help Jack. Which of the following is NOT an example of something that has caused Hazel to start losing hope?  
Hazel's hope from the swan skin has gone away as well. Be sure to think about how emotionally and physically exhausting the quest has been on Hazel.  
Use what you know about fairy tales to answer the following question. Hazel has lost all hope. Do you think she will get away from this woman? Or do you to think the woman will take Hazel away?  

Homework #21

The phrase, "the grass is always greener on the other side," may be a good description of how Hazel is feeling right now. It means that whenever Hazel is in the real world, she is fantasizing about the fantasy world, and now that she is in the fantasy world, she dreams about the real world.  
In fairy tales, the number three is very significant. For example, the Little Mermaid has three days to get the prince to kiss her, the prince has three wishes from the genie, and in the original fairy tale, the queen tries to trick Snow White three times. Therefore, we should keep these three strange things about the cabin in mind as we continue reading.  
There are various degrees of character development in novels. Round characters are very well developed, whereas flat characters are not. Also, a character is dynamic if he/she goes through a change in the story, whereas static characters stay the same throughout. Hazel would be considered a round and dynamic character since we know the most about her and she has gone through emotional changes. What type of character would this boy be at this point in the story?  
In fairy tales, characters who are greedy often lose the one thing they are searching for. In this story, the woman who wanted beauty had that taken away from her.  
Ben tells Hazel that he understands that she has to go save Jack. Which is the best prediction for why Jack understands?  
Ben uses the gun to protect his sister, and the books to keep her happy. These three objects, the gun, books, and bird, are all important because they come together to help us understand Ben as a character.  
Why do you think this particularly affect's Hazel? Use evidence from the story to support your answer.  
As you continue to read, think about how Disney's Frozen compares to the White Witch. How does the message in "Let it Go" (seen below) compare to the idea that it's easier to give yourself over to the ice?  (This annotation contains a video)
Section 2 Quiz 

Homework #22

Although Hazel feels as though she is no match to the White Witch, there must be something that Hazel has that she does not that could be used to defeat her. Think about what this might be as you continue reading.  
Why is this comment especially significant in a fairy tale?  
The Renaissance was a time period from about the 14th century to the 17th century. It was a time of growth in literature, art, and science. Shakespeare, Michelangelo, and da Vinci were all famous artists during the Renaissance.  
Where have the red shoes shown up before in the story?  
This encounter with the Woodsman has created more questions than answers. This could foreshadow that the answers to these questions will come later in the story.  

Homework #23

An encounter with which previous character in the story should warn Hazel away from making deals such as this?  
Think about all of the encounters and stories Hazel has come across on her adventure. Do any of these stories make you think Hazel should not trust this man?  
What do you think has caused Jack to want to go with the White Witch?  
This couple is being very kind and caring for Hazel, and the author mentions that "from somewhere she heard the sound of a bird singing." When Ben and his sister were alone, they were taken in by a kind couple and eventually turned the sister into a bird. This bird singing could foreshadow that this couple is planning to do the same to Hazel. By doing this, the author also creates suspense because the reader may be concerned that this will be Hazel's fate, and there is nothing we can do to stop it.  
A Renaissance Festival is a festival that celebrates the Renaissance time period. People participate in activities that were popular at the time, such as jousting and watching plays, and they wear costumes as well. Below is a picture that shows what people at a Renaissance Festival look like.  (This annotation contains an image)
What can we predict happened to the bird?  

Homework #24

Hazel is beginning to think that maybe her imagination has gotten the best of her again. She has realized that maybe saving Jack isn't as easy as it has always been when they play pretend.  
Why would Jack want to stay? 
"Too beautiful to be real" may foreshadow that there is something magical or supernatural about the garden that the couple owns.  
What are the flowers trying to tell Hazel?  
What have we learned from the stories the flowers told? It seems that they were all going through a difficult time, and the couple took them in. After they became flowers, they only remember happy thoughts about their previous lives.  
Hazel needs to leave the house, but she can't because of Nina's persuasion. What type of conflict is this?  
Hazel is maintaining her loyalty towards Jack no matter how many obstacles are in her way, and no matter how many times she has been told that Jack must want to have been taken. Loyalty is one of the strongest themes in fairy tales, and it is one of the strongest themes in this story as well.  
Which of the following sums up another theme from the story that Hazel has just realized?  

Homework #25

Even though Hazel has dealt consistently with obstacles, she is staying loyal to Jack, and continues to move forward to save him, even though she has only been told that it is impossible to defeat the white witch. Remember to think about what Hazel might be able to do in order to defeat the witch.  
The word haunches means the backside of either an animal or a human. Below is a picture of a wolf sitting on its haunches. (This annotation contains an image)
Thinking about all of the encounters Hazel has had with humans in the woods and patterns we see, which of the following might be the best advice to Hazel on approaching this girl?  
Hazel has decided to act kindly towards this young girl, despite all of the evil she has encountered throughout her journey.  
Hazel has given the girl her coat, her food, and her whistle, and told her to blow the whistle 3 times. Why might this be significant to this story?  
Keep in mind that Hazel does not know about the mirror's power, or that it has caused Jack's heart to turn to ice.  
An epoch is a very long period of time. The pronunciation of the word can be heard in the video below.  (This annotation contains a video)
What is the best synonym for parsimonious?  
Hazel used this memory of Jack to ignore the cold and focus on the warmth.  
What type of conflict is occurring between Hazel and the snow?  
When the cold first speaks to her, it seems as though it will be encouraging. However, the whispering quickly takes a turn when it states "and you are nothing." Hazel already feels defeated, and this discouragement will make the end of her quest even more difficult.  
How does the cold's whispering and Hazel's reaction to it relate to what everyone said about people not succumbing to the white witch unless they wanted to? And the comment that sometimes it's easier to give in to the ice?  

Homework #26

The witches kisses continue to keep Jack's heart icy and closed off from his previous life.  
Read the Seventh Story of the Snow Queen. Use the story to identify what will happen if Jack spells Eternity with the shards of ice. Find the story by clicking the link below. 

Homework #27

The cold is slowly taking everything away from Hazel that would keep her moving forward.  
Hazel fighting through the extreme snow storm may look something like the GIF below.  (This annotation contains an image)
The author uses vivid descriptions of how the snow and ice stopped. What literary device is the author using when she does this?  
Hazel has noticed that the witch has no warmth in her eyes, despite her kind and warm words. It's important that this difference is noticed by the reader and Hazel because it shows that even though her words are kind, they have ill intentions.  
What type of figurative language is being used here?  
The comment that the woods are no place for young girls have been repeated throughout the story. Although the woods have caused Hazel to struggle, she has overcome those and made it to the castle. Hazel may be disproving this idea that little girls cannot handle the woods.  
The reader knows why Jack never mentioned Hazel. What is the reason?  
The witch is tempting Hazel to stay by making it sound appealing that she could stay with Jack. This could be the answer to the question Hazel thought when she came up with the story with Adelaide. "Why would they want to stay?" 
Why does Hazel ask this question? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.  
The entire story Hazel and the readers have thought that she will need to defeat the witch in the end. The readers also thought that Hazel might use something she has that the witch does not have to defeat her. But the witch wants nothing, and we realize that Hazel does not have to defeat the witch. Her final battle will be against Jack's cold heart.  

Homework #28

How has the point of view changed with this chapter?  
This description of Hazel makes the reader realize that Jack has been seeing a limited amount of colors during his time with the witch. Hazel must look very colorful compared to all the snow and ice.  
What is the witch doing when she kisses Jack on the forehead?  
Floe is a sheet of floating ice. You can see an image of ice floes below.  (This annotation contains an image)
Hazel has just reached Jack at the castle. Based on the Plot Diagram, what point of the story have we just reached?  

Homework #29

The witch has taken away most of Jack's memories of his previous home. Jack is probably looking at Hazel like he doesn't know what she's saying because he really does believe that this castle is already his home.  
What type of figurative language is being used here?  
What is Hazel trying to do by creating this scene while looking at the flame?  
At this point, Jack is starting to be affected by the cold, which means the ice on his heart is starting to thaw or melt.  
Which of the following is NOT an example of how we know the stories are helping?  

Homework #30

Hazel has given up everything to save Jack, and she continues to make sacrifices for him by giving him all the warmth she can from her body. She compares him to a leach taking warmth from her body. A leach is an insect that sucks blood from humans.  
What seems to be happening with the ice?  
The witch has not had to struggle to get Jack to follow her or listen to her. Her presence pulls individuals towards her. Just the witch standing there is causing Jack to feel drawn towards her.  
The author creates suspense by describing the final encounter with Jack and the witch using incredible detail and imagery. Choose a sentence from this chapter that uses imagery to describe the events.  
To Hazel and Jack, this baseball was much more than just a baseball. It symbolized their loyalty and friendship. The loss of this item is much more significant than just losing a baseball.  
If the story was being told in third person omniscient point of view, meaning we have the thoughts of all characters, how might the reader's experience be different?  
Before when Hazel came to the clock, she recognized that the time reflected the time of the "real world." When Hazel sees 10:30, it must be 10:30 the next day. By her switching it to 7:00 at night, she's hoping when she goes back to the real world with Jack, that she will have been away for an appropriate amount of time.  
Jack is having trouble making the transition back into his real world. Why might Jack be hesitant to go back to his previous life?  
Hazel has made the decision to not let Tyler and the other boys bother her anymore. 
What do you think has caused Tyler to respond differently to Hazel?  
Remember that Hazel realized how much she appreciates her mother on her trip to save Jack. She once thought that Jack was the only one there for her, but she later realized that her mother was there for her as well.  
Section 3 Quiz