Hit the Road
Brit has had her driver's license only 11 days when her parents drop her off to stay at her grandmother's house for two weeks while they go on vacation. Little do they know Brit is headed for a three-state road trip with Nannie to pick up her college roommates, Florence, Aurelia, and Daisy, and bring them to their alma mater for their 65thand most likely finalreunion. A reluctant recruit at first, Brit is anxious as well as annoyed when she finds herself responsible for her fragile passengers. But things change as she sits behind the wheel up front and listens to "the girls" in the backseat laugh and reminisce about their 65 years of friendship. Inspired by their lifelong loyalty, Brit is willing to do whatever it takes to get the former college roommates to their reunion safely. From bestselling author Caroline B. Cooney, a heartwarming look at friendship, both young and old. From the Hardcover edition.
The curriculet is being added to your library
An idiom is a phrase that has a different meaning than what it literally states. "She's losing her marbles" is another way of saying that Nannie has gone crazy. Can you think of any other idioms? (This annotation contains an image)
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?
These two sentences reveal an important comparison. What is it?
Below is a picture of a yellow Mini Cooper. Pay attention to why Brit says she wants this particular car! (This annotation contains an image)
The author uses a simile to show how lovingly Nannie touches the car. The video below will give you more information about similes and metaphors. (This annotation contains a video)
Gail is Brit's mom and Nannie's daughter. Remember that she does not want Nannie driving because she believes that Nannie is too old and unable to drive safely.
Who is the narrator?
The author uses various types of figurative language in her writing. Watch the video below on figurative language, and try to notice examples while reading. (This annotation contains a video)
Can you make a personal connection to what Nannie is going through? Have you ever desperately wanted to do something, but someone told you that you couldn't? How did that make you feel?
Alzheimer's is a disease that causes people to have difficulty with their memories. It can be very severe and usually affects senior citizens. Look below to see how the disease changes brain tissue. (This annotation contains an image)
When Nannie says that Aurelia "has all her marbles," she is referring to ___________ that people often use.
The end of this chapter foreshadows what will happen to Brit next. To review foreshadowing, watch the video below. (This annotation contains a video)
How does Nannie respond to having her car and driver's license taken away? What do her actions tell you about her personality?
Below is a picture of where Long Island is in relation to New York City. From Brit's description, it seems as though she lives northeast of New York City in the grey portion of the map. (This annotation contains an image)
Although Mom says there is no traffic today, there is a lot of traffic from Brit's point of view. This is probably because
The L.I.E. refers to the Long Island Expressway. You can see where it is on the map below. (This annotation contains an image)
What is the meaning of the highlighted text?
Why does Brit check to see how much money is in Nannie's bank account before she takes any out? What does this tell you about what kind of person Brit is?
Watch the video below about point of view. You should be able to tell the difference between first person, second person, and third person. This will help you answer a question soon. (This annotation contains a video)
You can tell that this novel is told from the third person point of view because
A story typically follows the plot diagram shown below. Usually, the story starts off with the exposition, in which the author introduces the characters and setting and sets up the plot. The exposition is usually followed by the conflict, or main problem. Keep this in mind as you read. (This annotation contains an image)
Which of the following is the main conflict in the plot of this story?
Watch the video below about words with more than one meaning to prepare for the next question. (This annotation contains a video)
Which option best defines the word "remote" as it is used here? You can the Define feature for help, but remember than you are thinking about a multiple meaning word!
The author does not say exactly why Coop begins to avoid Brit, but you can infer that he found the embarrassing files about himself on Brit's laptop. The video below will tell you a little more about making inferences like this. (This annotation contains a video)
How is Brit feeling towards her grandmother at this point in the story and why? Explain your answer.
Here the author begins describing an event that took place a week before the events of the story are taking place. This is called a flashback. Watch the video below about flashbacks, and while you continue to read, think about what information the author is trying to give the reader with this flashback. (This annotation contains a video)
Why is the flashback about the yearbooks included?
Sometimes elderly people have some difficulty taking care of themselves and move to a home which includes hired assistance. You may have heard of a place like this called a "nursing home" or a "senior living" establishment.
Watch the video below about tone and mood and think about how this author uses them in the story. (This annotation contains a video)
A euphemism is a polite expression used in place of words or phrases that otherwise might be considered harsh or unpleasant to hear. What does the euphemism "she needed to powder her nose" mean that Brit needs to do?
When the author places a break in the page, it usually indicates a scene change. Think about what the change is here as you continue to read.
Brit hysterically refuses to hear about Nannie's trip to the bathroom. Her tone contributes to the _____ mood of the passage.
A "backseat driver" is an individual sitting in the backseat of the car who is bossily telling the driver what to do.
"Once I'm gone" is a(n) _______________ for "when I'm dead."
A car ferry transports cars across water. You can see an image of one below. (This annotation contains an image)
The Throgs Neck Bridge is a suspension bridge that connects Long Island to the Bronx. You can see an image of Throgs Neck Bridge in the photo below. (This annotation contains an image)
Would you be able to give a summary of the story so far? This video below will give you some pointers. (This annotation contains a video)
If you were writing a summary of the few chapters of the story, which event would be most important to include?
This is an example of onomatopoeia, or when an author uses words to describe a sound. In this case, the sound is music that Brit is just imagining in her head! Is there some foreshadowing here too?
Do you see any themes so far in the story? Think about it as you continue to read and keep in mind that the story may have more than one theme. The video below will give you more information about themes. (This annotation contains a video)
Brit has mixed feelings about Cooper after he calls her. How does the call make her feel and why?
Nannie is very independent. She is proud that she can do things on her own even though she is getting older. Think about why she might be crying now and keep in mind that this scene might be helping to develop a theme in the story.
How does Nannie's fall affect Brit?
Brit needs to move the car but is not able to. This is an example of an external conflict. The video below will explain the difference between an internal conflict and an external conflict. (This annotation contains a video)
The two similes in the highlighted text compare Nannie and Flo to a discarded napkin and a stained rag. What effect do the similes have?
Brit is having trouble deciding what the best thing to do in the situation is. This is an example of an internal conflict because it is taking place in her mind.
What connection does Brit and Nannie's situation have to Aston and Aurelia's situation?
Use the details to make an inference. Who most likely leaves the second voicemail?
Flo and Nannie are being especially kind to Brit. You should be able to make an inference and explain why they are behaving this way.
The Great Depression (1929 - 1939) was a devastating period in American history. Many people were extremely poor and had to make the best of whatever they had. The picture below is titled Migrant Mother. It is a famous photograph from the Great Depression. (This annotation contains an image)
Brit says that she is "following in Rupert's footsteps." She means that
Below is an image of a begonia, which Brit thinks of as "old-lady flowers." (This annotation contains an image)
The narrator is able to explain what Brit is thinking and can see into her mind. Which quote supports this statement?
Freedom and independence can come with responsibilities. Who or what is Brit responsible for? There may be more than one correct answer.
Section 1 Quiz
Notice that even though Nannie and Flo are elderly, the narrator tends to refer to them as "girls." This emphasizes the idea that they do not have the same rights and abilities as other adults. Does this relate to the theme of freedom?
What realization does Brit have about the reason why Cooper is calling her? How does this make her feel?
What part of the story changes when Brit, Nannie, and Flo finally see Aurelia?
Aurelia's comments to Brit have helped show Flo, Nannie, and Brit that she has not "lost her marbles." It seems as though the plan will be followed through.
Why did Aurelia really send Brit back to the room?
Can you feel Brit's anxiety right now? This is an example of a tense scene. Watch this video to learn about tension. (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following phrases adds to the anxious mood and the tension of the scene as the characters make their escape?
Non compos mentis is Latin meaning "not of sound mind."
Which of the following is NOT a true statement that explains why Brit should be nervous with the police car behind her?
Brit is the protagonist of the story. Is there a clear antagonist yet? Do you have some ideas about who it may be? (This annotation contains a video)
Various words mean the same thing, but they often have different connotations. The connotation is the positive or negative feeling behind a word. "Secondhand," "antique," and "used" all mean the same thing, but they have different connotations.
You can infer that Aston is a _________ person.
The town of Ashburnham is located near the northern border of Massachusetts and the southern border of New Hampshire. You can see it on the map below. (This annotation contains an image)
Explain why Aurelia is interested in going to a thrift shop.
The French Connection is a 1971 Academy Award Winning movie that is often said to have one of the greatest car chase sequences in film. When a book makes a reference to another piece of literature, art, film, or pop culture, it is called an allusion. (This annotation contains an image)
Which of the following is not something the reader may infer from the conversation about Woolie?
Give an example of an internal and an external conflict that is occurring in the story right now.
Point of view and perspective are very important at this point of the story. Up until now, Brit only had information about Aston III from Aurelia, Nannie, and Flo. She had never interacted with him herself, making her thoughts about him biased. As you continue to read, think about how the limited point of view of Brit might cause the reader to have a one-sided perspective of certain characters and situations.
Which character's perspective has the reader had the least amount of exposure to?
This video will teach you about personification. Can you identify what is being personified in the highlighted text? (This annotation contains a video)
Which of the following is an internal conflict that Brit is having?
This is the name of a perfume that has been around for a long time. (This annotation contains an image)
You can infer that Aston had Aurelia's card cancelled. How does this situation relate to the themes of freedom and independence?
What is being personified in the highlighted text?
Because the narrator can relay Brit's thoughts to you, you are able to learn a lot about her character. Brit is an imaginative dreamer who likes to make grand plans for her future. For example, in this scene she fantasizes about becoming royalty one day.
Notice the regretful tone that Aurelia uses. Which husband was the love of her life?
Which line shows that the narrator has insight into Brit's mind that the other character's do not?
Aurelia cries over an old gown that sold for five dollars, yet she did not care about abandoning her expensive jewelry all over the ground. What is really valuable to the women in the story?
Please explain how the highlighted sentence contributes to the development of the plot.
Watch the video below, which explains pacing. Most of this story is fast-paced. There are a lot of tense scenes involving making escapes. (This annotation contains a video)
Aurelia is crying in response to which event?
This is another idiom, which will be explained as you continue reading.
The author is not really referring to cards. She is using a metaphor. What do you think she is saying about the "girls"?
Brit is discovering that as she matures and has more freedom, she also has more
Use "schlepped" in a sentence of your own. Remember that you can use the Define feature for help.
Now the girls know why Brit insisted that they make a detour. Do you think that seeing the happy new bride in the wedding gown might make Aurelia feel better? It seems like this woman will cherish the dress.
Section 2 Quiz
Aside from being a color, the word "lavender" also refers to a type of plant. The flowering herb has been used for its sweet fragrance in perfumes and other products for a long time. (This annotation contains an image)
Which option best describes the lawyer's tone?
The BBC is the British Broadcasting Corporation. The narrator is trying to relay that Aston sounds very formal and cultured.
Do you believe Aston's story that Flo wrote Aurelia's will? Or do you think Aurelia wrote it herself? Make sure you use the text to support what your opinion is.
Follow the link and read the article below. It will help you answer the next two questions. (This annotation contains a link)
Which of the following aspects of Alzheimer's Disease do the story and the article you just read both discuss?
Hit the Road is an example of the realistic fiction genre. Which category does the health article you just read belong in?
In what tone does Aston say "I love her"?
Notice how one of the "girls" is being treated like a child again. Think about how this relates to the theme of freedom and independence.
Is what Aston is doing legal? The answer should be very obvious! No matter how stern or friendly a stranger acts, you never get into a car with him or her, regardless of your age. Think about what you would do if you were Brit.
This paragraph moves the plot along with a lot of action. It is
This is a black Porsche Carrera like Aston's. (This annotation contains an image)
Brit is torn between be sympathetic to Aston and being angry. She is ______.
What character traits of Aston have been revealed during the scene? The video below will help you reflect on character traits. (This annotation contains a video)
What do the "girls" think of Brit? Think of their actions and then explain your answer.
These words stand alone because the author wants to emphasize them. Trust and friendship are important themes in the novel.
Watch the first 30 seconds of the video to learn what hydroplaning is and to see an example of it happening. (This annotation contains a video)
How does Flo respond to the kidnapping situation?
Brit keeps hanging up on Cooper, but it seems like he has some very important information that could help her. This adds to the tension in the story. What kind of information do you think he might have about Aston? Remember that he is supposed to have great research skills!
Which of the following options is one of Aston's character traits?
Something is obviously different about Nannie. What do you think Aston may have done to her that would cause her to be acting so strangely?
The highlighted phrase contains an example of hyperbole. Can you spot it? The video below can help. (This annotation contains a video)
Which event would be the least important to include in a summary of the story so far?
A restraining order is a serious official document. It can be used to keep an individual from harassing someone. This detail tells you that Aston has behaved badly before. (This annotation contains an image)
The story illustrates how responsibilities change as you grow up. When you are young, you are taken care of by your elders. In time, those people may need your care in return. Do your parents ever have to help out an older relative who needs assistance driving, shopping, or making appointments?
Why do Nannie and her friends call themselves "Buttermeres"?
So what if Brit is not "brilliant" with computers! Does she know someone who is?
At first Coop is really annoyed that Brit is calling him late at night, but when he realizes that she really needs his help, how does his attitude change? Explain your answer.
Watch the first 30 seconds of the video below. Make sure you know the difference between a static and a dynamic character. (This annotation contains a video)
What makes Aston a static character?
These are Brit's initials. Aston has set her up to look like a criminal.
Which character is the story's antagonist?
A straitjacket is a garment designed to restraint a patient. It is meant to keep someone who is not mentally well from harming herself/himself or other people. (This annotation contains an image)
Why is this sentence so important to the story? Please explain your answer.
Think about the plot diagram again. Now that the major action has happened, you are moving towards the resolution. (This annotation contains an image)
"...a Burberry raincoat did not make a person civilized." This is another way of saying
What does Nannie mean by this? Think about how Brit has changed during the story.
Rupert's comments usually impact the mood of a scene by making it
Section 3 Quiz