Once There Was a War

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A selection of dispatches written by the author from England, Africa, and Italy at the height of World War II.
Curriculet Details
37 Questions
52 Annotations
3 Quizzes

Designed for students in 11-12 grades, this free digital curriculum contains annotations detailing historical significance, visual representations, and literary devices. It also contains interactive videos that support comprehension, such as videos about seminal document connections, characterization, and irony. Over the course of the book, students will answer Common Core questions and quizzes related to the subjects of textual connections, literary devices, and author’s purpose. This free online unit will increase student engagement while building reading comprehension.

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Homework #7

These references (allusions) refer to the war in Vietnam. An allusion is a reference designed to call something to mind without mentioning it explicitly. 
This novel starts out like a fairy tale. The structure of a fairy tale varies quite greatly from most informational texts. According to Readwritethink.org, some standard features of fairy tales are "Fairy tales happen in the long ago... There may be magic with giants, elves, talking animals, witches or fairies... [They] have clearly defined Good characters vs. Evil characters... Fairy tales have happy endings..." Why do you think that the author decided to begin his informational text in this way? 
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The highlighted text contains the rhetorical strategy known as polyptoton. This rhetorical device is a type of repetition. Knowing this, and using the sentence as your guide, choose the option that offers the best definition for this strategy/device. 
Did you know that you can look up any word in the text of the book or the text of the questions and answers? Just click (or press on mobile devices) the word you want to define and hold until the blue text selector pops up. When you release, a define option will appear. Since it's so easy to look up words, make sure you use this feature frequently... Is there a word on this page you need to look up? 
Yet again, the author includes an allusion in the telling of his story. This time, the reference is to Achilles, a Greek mythological hero. According to History.com, "The warrior Achilles is one of the great heroes of Greek mythology. According to legend, Achilles was extraordinarily strong, courageous and loyal, but he had one vulnerability–his “Achilles heel.” Homer’s epic poem The Iliad tells the story of his adventures during the last year of the Trojan War." This war is wear Achilles met his death. 
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Based on the subject-matter being discussed, what do you think the highlighted word means? 

ENGLAND

The highlighted text contains personification. The author is giving fatigue (a non-human thing) the human quality of possessing odor. With that in mind, do you think that you can create a definition for this literary device? 
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.5
It's interesting to note that the last chapter was written in past tense. This one, on the other hand, is written in present. Why do you think that this is so? 
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.4
What literary device is being used in the highlighted text? 
According to USO.org, the United Service Organizations was established on October 30, 1941. Its main objective was to provide the emotional support that the troops around the world needed during wartime. Not only does the USO entertain the troops, it also helps the families back home, along with soldiers that have returned home after deployment. (This annotation contains an image)
The picture below includes a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress. This aircraft is a four-engine heavy bomber aircraft, which was developed and introduced in the 1930s for the United States Army Air Corps. It can reach top speeds of 287 miles per hour. (This annotation contains an image)
This crew, the 91st Bomb Group, flew 340 missions. They were based out of London, England. (This annotation contains an image)
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For what reason does the narrator think that the aircraft ("ships") should not be renamed? 
Goering's yellow noses were a group of pilots known for being some of the best pilots in the fleet. 
Jerry is a nickname that was given to Germans during WWII. 
During the war, many reports were presented to the American public, which made the war seem less intense and "nearly won" before this was the case. For instance, during the times of war where the efforts were succeeding, casualties were not reported accurately, in hopes of the American public backing the war with more vigor. 
The video below offers the story of a chaplain during WWII. As you watch, consider the role of this military position. (This annotation contains a link)
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During WWII, what was the purpose of a chaplain? 
The picture below offers a map that illustrates the distance between the locations discussed below. Dover, according to the narrator, was very close to the enemy, which was probably too close for comfort. (This annotation contains an image)
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According to the text, how often did Dover encounter a threat from the enemy (German)? 
A wing commander is a senior commissioned rank in the Royal Air Force. Wing commanders, during WWII, most often commanded a group of three or four aircraft squadrons. (This annotation contains an image)
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.5
Analyze the title of this section. Why is this section called 'Alcoholic Goat'? Is it an apt title? Why or why not? 
The highlighted text contains a great deal of imagery. Watch the video below for a brief overview of this literary device. (This annotation contains a video)
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.4
Choose the line of text from the above paragraph that contains a good example of imagery. Explain how imagery is used, then explain why an author might use imagery in his/her writing. 
According to IMDB.com, this film is about two witches (Jennifer and her father Daniel), from 1672, “who were burned by puritan Jonathan Wooley. In revenge, Jennifer cursed all future generations of the Wooley family, that the sons will always marry the wrong woman and be miserable. In the 20th century, a bolt of lightning frees Jennifer and her father from the tree that had kept their souls imprisoned. Jennifer assumes corporeal form and decides to make up-and-coming politician Wallace Wooley, then unhappily engaged, even more miserable by getting him to fall in love with her before his wedding. Wallace is a straight arrow, though, and Jennifer has to resort to a love potion. As we all know, love potions tend to backfire, with comedic results.” (This annotation contains an image)
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From the author's description of the day's events, we can infer that life in London was ________________.  
The video below includes one of Bob Hope's shows, during a USO tour in 1944. As you watch, consider the narrator's words about this man. (This annotation contains a video)
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How does the narrator attempt to persuade the reader to believe that Bob Hope is great man? 
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Using the sentence for context clues, choose the option that offers the best definition for the highlighted word. 
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According to the video above, what life experience molded Mussolini into a bully? 
The link below provides a short video, which includes a biography of Benito Mussolini. As you watch, consider the factors that made him such a merciless ruler. This man, as he is being spoken about in the passage, became the dictator of Italy in 1925. In 1942, this man saw his dictatorship slipping through his fingers. (This annotation contains a link)
Since Italy is shaped like a boot, it is easy to describe locations like you would describe the parts of a leg. Where do you think the ship is on the map? (This annotation contains an image)
Quiz #1 

AFRICA

Based on the context of the sentence, what do you think is the main purpose of a steward? 
A phonograph is a record player. (This annotation contains an image)
The article/video below discusses the feelings of family members, once their deployed loved ones have returned from Afghanistan. Do you think that this return compares to the return of soldiers during WWII? (This annotation contains a link)
Algiers is the largest city in Algeria. (This annotation contains an image)
The image below is a 1943 advertisement for liquor. Many of the advertisements during the war included war related content. (This annotation contains an image)
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Considering the content of this passage of the chapter, where do you think Algiers is located? 
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.4
Explain the personification present within the highlighted text. 
The advertisement below is from 1943. It's for cigarettes. What do you find unique about this advertisement? (This annotation contains an image)
The picture below is that of 100 Algerian francs. This bank note replaced the Algerian budju when France occupied this area. Notice how different it looks from an American one-hundred dollar bill. (This annotation contains an image)
Below is a picture of a GI watch. (This annotation contains an image)
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For what reason is the lieutenant so mad about the GI watches being in the possession of these drunk men? 
In 1943, the St. Louis Cardinals played the New York Yankees in the World Series. Below is a program from this game. What do you find most interesting about the images on this program? (This annotation contains an image)
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Why do you think that these prisoners were not unhappy about being taken to America? 
The image below is that of a C-ration box. C-ration boxes were rations of food served to combat soldiers beginning in WWII. They were individually boxed rations that contained meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These boxes contained cans that held items such as ham, chicken, and turkey. There were also biscuits, crackers, cigarettes, and chewing gum. (This annotation contains an image)
The link below directs you to an article that chronicles the history of Short Snorters. As you read, pay close attention to how this practice has spanned history, since its start in 1925. (This annotation contains a link)
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According to to the article about Short Snorters, what other (other than soldiers) profession subscribed to this practice? 
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Explain the irony present in the name of this tank. 
Quiz #2 

ITALY

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Using the Define feature, look-up the definition of the highlighted word. Choose the option from below that correctly uses this word in a sentence. 
The picture below is from the American invasion of Salerno, Italy (September of 1943). This picture illustrates the scene that the narrator is describing. (This annotation contains an image)
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For what reasons were the soldiers prohibited from venturing into the city? Choose the option that is NOT a correct response to this question, as it is answered in the text. 
The highlighted text contains a simile. In comparing the nights to "all the Fourth of Julys in history," what point is the narrator trying to make? 
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.5
In what way does calling the upcoming event a "great occasion" employ verbal irony? Why might the narrator be using this literary device at this point in the novel? 
The video below discusses verbal irony. This literary device is often used in a text, in order to make a reader stop and think about what has just been said. As you watch, consider what this literary device has to do with the text. (This annotation contains a video)
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In your opinion, what made Ducks so important to the war efforts? In answering this question, you may discuss a feature and/or a use of this transportation device. 
The article below explains how Ducks were created and then utilized during WWII. As you read, pay attention to the features of this vehicle/boat that made it so helpful during the war. (This annotation contains a link)
The picture below includes an 88 mm gun. This gun was "a German anti-aircraft and anti-tank artillery gun from World War II. It was widely used by Germany throughout the war, and was one of the most recognized German weapons of that conflict" (Wikipedia.com). (This annotation contains an image)
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According to the text, what is the most profound feature of these new German bombs? 
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For what purpose do you think that the narrator decided to include this story about the mirror into the text? What does it add to the text? 
The picture below is that of amaryllis. This flower symbolizes pride, determination, and beauty. (This annotation contains an image)
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.5
Why is this passage titled 'Welcome'? 
The video below discusses characterization. In the highlighted text, the narrator uses a great deal of direct characterization. How has the narrator/protagonist been characterized throughout this novel? (This annotation contains a video)
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Using the way in which these "five monsters" have been characterized, what do you think the highlighted word means? 
The highlighted text contains a simile. With that in mind, what two things are being compared? 
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What is the purpose of this passage? What point is the narrator attempting to present to the readers? 
The Alletti Hotel is located in Algier's city center. When the French occupied this area, this hotel was named the Alletti, but it was changed to Hotel Es Safir. It opened its doors in 1930 and is still open today. (This annotation contains an image)
The reference to "a Republican Leprechaun" is referring to Calvin Coolidge. This man was the 30th president of the United States (1923-1929). He was credited with cleaning-up the White House, after the death of President Harding. (This annotation contains an image)
The picture below includes a Haig & Haig Pinch Bottle of whiskey. (This annotation contains an image)
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According to the narrator, what special feat did the Elf (as he was named in the text) do that intrigued the other correspondents? 
The video below shows British torpedo boats in action, during WWII. Is this what you pictured while the narrator was describing these vessels? (This annotation contains a video)
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What literary device is used in the highlighted text? 
Please open the article, which is linked below. As you read about ships being called 'she,' look for the reasons that this tradition came to be. (This annotation contains a link)
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According to the article "Lloyd's List sinks the tradition of calling ships 'she,'" why are ships referred to as females? Choose the answer from below that is NOT a theory provided by the article. 
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.4
What literary device is being used in the highlighted text? 
The picture below includes multiple Nissen huts. (This annotation contains an image)
The map below shows the location of the Tyrrhenian Sea. What island do you think that the text is talking about? (This annotation contains an image)
The image below shows the shoulder insignia of a Navy captain. (This annotation contains an image)
The picture below shows the shoulder insignias that the lieutenants should have been wearing. (This annotation contains an image)
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The text lists quite a few ways in which the paratroopers being discussed are much different from "normal" paratroopers. In what way were they described that compared them to "normal" paratroopers? 
The image below shows the location of Ventotene, which is off the coast of Italy. (This annotation contains an image)
The image below includes a whaleboat. (This annotation contains an image)
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According to the text, what fact about the invasion of the island made it clear that the Americans had luck on their sides? 
Two years prior to this date (December 8, 1941), President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered his Pearl Harbor Address to the Nation. This speech ended with the declaration that the United States would be entering into the war (WWII). As you listen, compare the state of the United States on that date, in1941, to the events currently being discussed in the novel. (This annotation contains a video)
The highlighted text contains hyperbole. The narrator is exaggerating, in order to make the point that the lieutenant is very nervous about the upcoming event. 
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After reading more about the events (as described in the novel) that occurred in early December (1943), how does the situation described compare to the situation on December 8, 1941? When answering, consider utilizing information from FDR's Pearl Harbor Address to the Nation. 
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Choose the option that best describes the American lieutenant currently being discussed in the passage. 
Below is the cap of a Luftwaffe. (This annotation contains an image)
Quiz #3 
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For what reason do you think that the author chose to end the novel with this story?