The Black Stallion
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Watch the video tribute to the Black Stallion. How does the video depict the Black? Is it similar to how he is depicted in the text? (This annotation contains a video)
1. Homeward Bound
Story Introduction: This book is about a young boy, Alec Ramsay, who finds a wild black stallion at a small Arabian port on the Red Sea. Between the black stallion and young boy, a strange understanding grows that lead them through untold dangers as they journey to America. Alec never imagines how his adventures with the black stallion will capture the interest of an entire nation.
Alec is on his way back to America. Why has he spent the last two months in India?
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of tersely. Which of the following is a synonym (word with similar meaning) for tersely?
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?
2. The Storm
Look at the image of the map. The ship is traveling north from Spain up to the United Kingdom (England). From there, Alec will travel to America. (This annotation contains an image)
Imagery is the use of figurative language to represent objects, actions and ideas in such a way that it appeals to our physical senses. Which of the five senses does the author's use of imagery appeal to in the highlighted text?
Why is the dark-skinned man hysterical when he talks to Captain Watson?
Why do you think Alex wants to set the Black free?
How does Alec use his pocketknife to get him out of a dangerous situation? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.
Do you recall what Uncle Ralph told Alec when he gave him the pocketknife?
3. The Island
Does it seem the Black is getting more familiar with Alec? What do you think the Black would do if Alec were to walk over to him?
How does Alec know the island is mostly flat and that there is very little food on the island?
Why does Alec smile when the Black whistles?
Make Predictions: Do you think Alec will catch a fish today?
Carragheen is a species of red algae which grows abundantly along the rocky parts of the Atlantic coast of Europe and North America. In its fresh condition, this protist is soft and cartilaginous, varying in color from a greenish-yellow, through red, to a dark purple or purplish-brown. (This annotation contains an image)
What process does Alec follow in order to get the carragheen ready to eat? Cite textual evidence to support your answer.
4. The Wildest of All Wild Creatures
Do you think Alec will ever get close to the Black? Why or why not?
What do the details in the highlighted text reveal about the Black?
Compare and contrast the movie scene of Alec learning to ride the Black to the book version of the scene. What similarities do they share? How are they different?
Watch the video and then answer the question that follows. (This annotation contains a video)
Personification is a figure of speech in which a thing, an idea or an animal is given human attributes. The non-human objects are portrayed in such a way that we feel they have the ability to act like human beings. In this example, the flames are given the human characteristic of "reaching hungrily." Watch the video to learn more about personification. (This annotation contains a video)
Based on the details in the text, what can you infer is happening in this scene?
Which word BEST describes how Alec feels when the men do not believe there is a horse on the island with him?
In this sentence, the freighter is compared to the 'Drake' using the comparative adjective "larger." Comparative adjectives compare two nouns. When forming comparative adjectives, add -er to one syllable words. For multisyllabic words, add "more" in front of the word. Watch the video for more examples of comparative adjectives. (This annotation contains a video)
Why is the Black fighting against himself about getting in the boat?
Do you think the Black will be able to get in the boat before the men leave?
Summarize how Alec placed the band around the Black?
What happens to the Black when he takes his eyes off Alec? How does he react to other people?
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of 'bedlam.' How would you describe the hold the animals are in?
How does Alec feel about the ship's crew having to get the Black on board?
6. King of the Herd
Point of view is the mode of narration that an author uses to let the readers “hear” and “see” what takes place in a story. Writers use a point of view to express what they want to convey to their readers. Watch the video and then answer the question below. (This annotation contains a video)
From which point of view is this story written?
Since Alec's parents do not know about the Black, how do you think they will react when they find out he is with Alec?
What does Pat mean by saying the Black is "built for speed"?
What causes the Black to get into a fight with the chestnut horse?
The Black looks at the group of horses to let them know he is the strongest horse. In the wild, the Black would be the leader of the herd.
The highlighted sentence contains an example of personification. Which of the following states the example correctly?
Why does the Black get upset when Alec leaves him? What does this reveal about their relationship?
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of grooms. Which of the following is used correctly in the context of this sentence?
'Weak' is a homophone. Homophones are words that sound the same but have different meanings. Usually they are spelled differently, but they can also be spelled the same. Therefore, 'weak/week' are homophones. Watch the video to view more examples. (This annotation contains a video)
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of quarantine. Below, type the correct definition that correctly fits the context of the sentence.
Why does Alec tear up when he sees the Statue of Liberty?
Below is a picture of the Statue of Liberty. (This annotation contains an image)
Do you think blindfolding the Black is a good idea? Why or why not?
How does the blindfold help Alec get the Black off of the boat?
How do Alec's parents react to his request to take the Black home? What evidence from the text supports your answer?
Why is Joe Russo interested in Alec and the Black?
How is Alec's father encouraging him to be responsible and mature?
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of acquainted. Which of the following is an antonym (word with opposite meaning) for acquainted?
According to Henry, what qualities make a good horse?
Do you think Napoleon will be good for the Black?
How does Alec feel about being back home? What evidence from the text supports your answer?
Which word BEST describes how Alec's mother feels about him being back home?
"My God!" is the English equivalent of the Italian phrase "Dio mio!" The masculine noun 'Dio' means "god." The masculine possessive adjective 'mio' means "my." The pronunciation is "DEE-oh MEE-oh."
Why is the Black upset?
How do Alec's parents keep from hearing the commotion the Black caused at the barn?
What evidence from the text proves that Alec is tired?
What does this detail reveal about the Black?
Make Predictions: What kind of work does Napoleon do?
Dialogue is conversation between two or more characters in a story, play, or movie. Watch the video to learn more about dialogue. (This annotation contains a video)
What does Henry think of the Black? Use evidence from the text to support your answer?
Why does Henry think the Black will make a good racehorse?
What is Henry's plan for training the Black? Sequence his plan from Fall to Spring.
10. The Search
Simile and Metaphor: Both simile and metaphor compare two distinct objects and draws similarity between them. The difference is that simile uses “like” or “as” and metaphor does not. Watch the video to learn more about simile and metaphor. (This annotation contains a video)
The Black's speed is compared to a "streak of lightning" using a _______________.
Onomatopoeia is defined as a word which imitates the natural sound of a thing. It creates a sound effect that mimics the thing described, making the description more expressive and interesting. Why is "tapping" an example of onomatopoeia? Watch the video to find out. (This annotation contains a video)
Can you identify the onomatopoeia in this sentence? Type the word below.
Dialect is the language used by the people of a specific area, class, district or any other group of people. The term dialect involves the spelling, sounds, grammar and pronunciation used by a particular group of people and it distinguishes them from other people around them. Dialect is a very powerful and common way of characterization, which elaborates the geographic and social background of any character.
Henry leaves off the "A" at the beginning of his sentence. What does this detail reveal about Henry's dialect?
What does this detail reveal about the papers?
Flashbacks are interruptions that writers use to insert past events in order to provide background or context to the current events of a narrative. By using flashbacks, writers allow their readers to gain insight into a character’s motivation and provide a background to a current conflict. Dream sequences and memories are methods used to present flashbacks. Watch the quick video to learn more about flashback. (This annotation contains a video)
Notice Henry's dialect in this section of text. He leaves the "g" off of 'getting' and 'coming.' We know that the setting is a suburb of New York City, however, Henry sounds like he is from a southern state rather than a northern one.
Why are Henry and Alec going to have to work as partners to get food for Black?
What is unique about the Black? Why does Henry say he has never seen anything like him?
Which literary device is used in the highlighted text?
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of parentage. Which of the following is a synonym (word with similar meaning) for parentage?
Why do you think Henry has kept the Black in the barn all morning? Do you think he is going to time him to see how fast he runs?
Why does Henry tell Alec to "lead him around" so the Black can get used to the snow?
See the image below of a black horse rolling on its back in the snow. (This annotation contains an image)
12. Training Begins
Why is Alec so excited on this particular day? Use evidence from the text to support your answer.
Why is Alec in such a hurry to get to the barn?
How do Henry and Alec work together in order to get the saddle on the Black?
Why does the Black react this way when the saddle is placed on his back?
Do you think Alec will eventually get on the Black with the saddle on too?
Why is it a good time to put the bridle on the Black?
13. Night Ride
"Shhhh" is an example of onomatopoeia. Onomatopoeic words represent sounds. Look at the poster below for more examples of onomatopoeia. (This annotation contains an image)
What does Henry mean by "sure as shootin'?"
Why do Henry and Alec take the Black to the track at night?
Make Predictions: How do you think the Black will react to being on the track?
What can you infer is the reason Jake has a stopwatch?
Alec loses control of the Black. How will he lead him around the track without control of the reins?
What does this detail reveal about the relationship between Napoleon and the Black?
Do you agree with Jake that the Black is "as wild as they come"? Do you think it is possible for the Black to ever run on a track with other horses?
Why may the Black never be able to run in a real race?
What does Henry mean by this statement?
14. Cyclone and Sun Raider
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of ponderously. Which of the following is a synonym (word with similar meaning) for ponderously?
What might have caused Napoleon to want to try to run with the Black?
Compare and contrast Sun Raider and Cyclone. How are they alike? How are they different?
"Biggest" and "fastest" are superlative adjectives. Superlative adjectives compare three or more nouns. To form a superlative adjective, add -est to the end of one syllable words. To form a superlative for multisyllabic words, add "most" before the word. Watch the video to learn more about superlative adjectives. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following is NOT a superlative adjective?
Why does Alec stop and look at Henry after he says "We've been racing-"
Why do Henry and Alec invite Joe to the track to watch the Black run?
What do you think Joe and Jim will think of the Black when they see him run?
15. The Mystery Horse
Why does Jim jokingly call Napoleon a champion?
How does Napoleon's presence affect the Black?
Do you agree with Henry that it takes courage to ride the Black?
Jim Neville congratulates Alec on his _____________________.
How does Jim Neville use his article to get people's attention about the "mystery" horse?
Why does Alec say he will talk it over with his dad instead of his mother?
Why is Alec feeling discouraged? Have you ever felt discouraged about something?
What affect does riding the Black have on Alec?
After reading the headline to the newspaper, do you think Alec is still discouraged? What evidence from the text supports your answer?
What do you think Alec's dad will say when he learns that the mystery horse is the Black?
Why does Alec walk to the window and draw the curtain back?
Why does Jim not want Henry to run the Black at Belmont any more? Why is keeping the Black's identity a secret important to Jim?
Why does the Black need to get to the track a few days before the race is to take place?
Why have special arrangements been made for the Black to travel to Chicago in a special train car?
How is Jim making the Black look like a champion racehorse?
Do you think Tony will allow them to take Napoleon with them to Chicago?
Why does Tony agree to let Napoleon go to Chicago with the Black?
The men and Alex are traveling to Chicago in a _______________ with the horses.
How do you think the Black will react to the train car? Why do new experiences make him nervous?
Do you think Henry and Alec made a smart move by bringing Napoleon with them? What evidence from the text supports your answer?
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of deserted. Which of the following sets of words most closely relates to the context of this sentence?
How does Cyclone differ from the Black?
What does Henry mean by "Kentucky born and bred"?
18. The Match Race
Foreshadowing is a literary device in which a writer gives an advance hint of what is to come later in the story. There are various ways of creating a foreshadowing. A writer may use dialogues of characters to hint at what may occur in the future. In addition, any event or action in the story may throw a hint to the readers about future events or action. Foreshadowing in fiction creates an atmosphere of suspense in a story so that the readers are interested to know more. Based on the author's use of foreshadowing in the highlighted text, do you think the Black will win the race?
Why is Mrs. Ramsay unaware that a race is going on? How might she react if she discovers that Alec and the Black are participating in the race?
Do you find this a little comical that Mrs. Ramsay feels guilty because Alec and Mr. Ramsay will not be able to see the race?
"Slickest" is an example of a ___________.
Why does Henry give Alec this "pep talk" and words of encouragement? Do you think this will help Alec's confidence on the track?
Did you expect the Black to act this way when he came in contact with Cyclone and Sun Raider? Why or why not?
Do you think the Black will be able to race with an injured leg? Explain your answer.
Watch the video clip from The Black Stallion (1979) movie and then answer the question below. (This annotation contains a video)
How are the characters and events depicted in the movie similar to the ones in the story?
After you finish Quiz 3, continue reading the next several pages to find out about the author and his love for horses.