Watch the video below about point of view and cultural perspective. This particular text is non-fiction, and it is written from a first person point of view. What kinds of elements will you need to look for when reading a first person informational text? (This annotation contains a video)
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?
Which of the following is NOT a detail that indicates this protest lacks power?
The website below can give you more information about the Panchen Lama. Does he look like you thought he would? (This annotation contains a link)
What is Isabel attempting to do?
Would you have recognized the Tibetan flag before seeing it now? (This annotation contains an image)
What is being implied in the sentence, "And no one knew"?
Asking if someone can read or write Chinese is a pretty vague question. There are many dialects that make up what is known as Chinese. However, if you want to learn Chinese, it is likely Manadarin would be what you would want to learn.
How is this historical information presented differently from what you would see in a history textbook? What is the effect on the reader by presenting the information in this way?
Does this sound like a book you might be interested in reading? If so, you can learn more about it at the site below. (This annotation contains a link)
What is the danger in generations of people not knowing their own history? Respond based on what you have read thus far, using information from the text in your writing.
It might be hard to wrap your brain around the difference between independence and autonomy. Here is a simplified explanation. With autonomy, a state can make its own rules and regulations as long as they are not in violation of the larger state's laws. Independence allows for rules and regulations to be created without regard to another country's laws. Why would Tibet accept autonomy over independence at this point?
Which word would NOT describe how the author feels about the general lack of interest in Tibet?
The Jeeves the author is referring to is the search engine Ask Jeeves, which has since become simply ask.com. (This annotation contains a link)
Do you think she is making the right decision to travel to Tibet? Explain your position using what you have learned from reading the text.
The picture below is a street scene in Kathmandu, Nepal. How does it compare to the vivid picture the author has provided in the highlighted text? (This annotation contains an image)
Why does the author immerse herself into the culture of Kathmandu and Buddhism?
Pictured below are Tibetan monks dressed similarly to how Khenpo would be dressed. Is this what you imagined he would look like? (This annotation contains an image)
Isabel decided to "be outrageous." Why does she decide to do this?
Khenpo might be referring to balep korkun, which is a type of flat bread that is cooked in a skillet as opposed to baked in an oven. What might it be compared to that you are familiar with?
How can you tell that the monk seems to think it's a negative thing to be high class?
Apparently this type of tea is an acquired taste! You can learn more about what it tastes like and how it's made, including a recipe for you to try, at the website below. (This annotation contains a link)
Why does Isabel tell the American woman that she hopes she has "...a good life or a good many lives"?
The video below offers a brief introduction to the caste system in India. While it is illegal to discriminate based on caste, it still does happen socially. Why do you think the caste system still exists? (This annotation contains a video)
Is Isabel being naive in trusting the monk? Why or why not? Be sure to use information from the text to support your opinion.
Diamox is used to treat symptoms of altitude sickness. You can learn more about the medication and some myths surrounding it at the website below. Is what you have read about Diamox in the book the same as what you read on the website? (This annotation contains a link)
Why are Khenpo and Isabel speaking in metaphors?
Isabel doesn't really explain why it was important to her to have a Tibetan guide. What might her reasons have been?
What is ironic about what the Dutchman said and then did?
Yaks have been mentioned numerous times in this text. Have you ever seen one? The picture below is of a yak, which can grow to be as much as seven feet tall! An interesting fact about yaks is that despite looking like they might be incredibly smelly animals, they actually have very little odor! (This annotation contains an image)
Watch this short video of a mountain climber who is experiencing some symptoms of altitude sickness then answer the question below the video. (This annotation contains a video)
How does Isabel's bout with altitude sickness compare with the woman in the video you just watched?
What is Isabel implying about her fellow travelers?
The picture below os of Tashilhunpo Monastery in Shigatse. Does it look anything like you expected it to? (This annotation contains an image)
Why do you think Isabel's reaction to what she is seeing is so different from the others she is traveling with? Explain your thoughts using details from the book.
Have you ever thought about that -- the freedom of speech enjoyed in places like the United States? It is often taken for granted; there are many places around the world where speaking your mind about political, religious, or social issues is restricted to what the government wants you to say. Can you imagine what it would be like if citizens of the United States were not allowed to be critical of its president or political leaders and were only allowed to speak positively about them? How would that feel?
Which of the following is NOT one of the ways the author tries to pique your interest in Buddhism?
Which of the following is NOT one of the ways the author injects humor into her writing?
Watch the video below to see how the prostrations are done. Pay close attention to how precise the form is and how physical it is do the prostrations correctly. (This annotation contains a video)
The author says that she is neither really rich nor really kind. You know that she really isn't wealthy. But is she kind? Why or why not? Use information you have learned about her from the text in your response.
In the last annotation, you watched a video on how to properly do Buddhist prostrations. Now that you know how they are done, do you have a better understanding of why Isabel's socks would have been greatly appreciated by the old woman?
How does the author want you to feel about Buddhism?
The website below offers a guide to dining on Nepalese food as well as some examples of typical cuisine, including recipes. Does any of it sound like something you might like to try? (This annotation contains a link)
Why would Khenpo feel rage? Is his rage justified? Use what you have learned thus far in the text to develop your response.
Roses traditionally have symbolic meanings according to their colors. White roses originally stood for purity or innocence but they have also come to show honor to a friend or loved one as he or she starts something new or to bid farewell. What could the roses Kehnpo is presenting to Isabel mean?
Which word could NOT be used to describe Isabel's feelings for Khenpo?
Amnesty International is an organization that works on behalf of human rights worldwide. Their United States website is below. Do you know of other human rights issues Amnesty International might be involved with besides Tibet? (This annotation contains a link)
If the author is dubious about the benefits of the vigil, how can it be worthy? Or if there are no benefits, is the effort worthy? What is your opinion? Explain it using information you have learned from the text.
Flowers often have symbolic meanings. In China, white chrysanthemums are symbolic of grief. Do you think chrysanthemums were chosen on purpose for this event?
What does the highlighted passage shoe you about Isabel?
The video below demonstrates how to tie a round turn and two half hitches. Why did Isabel choose to tie this knot? (This annotation contains a video)
What is the benefit of press coverage of this event?
The map below can be used to help you envision the area that is being discussed in the highlighted text. (This annotation contains an image)
Why were Isabel and Khenpo confused about each other?
How big is China? Well, in size, it's not noticeably different from the United States. China has an area of 3.7 million square miles while the United States is 3.8 million square miles. However, when speaking in terms of population, China is much larger than the United States, with more than 1.3 billion people compared to the United States at just over 320 million people.
Why do Isabel and Kate laugh so heartily at the suggestion to write letters as a way of changing the mindset of the Chinese in China?
It is obvious that the passages from the book are quite disturbing. Why do you think it is important to know that such torture exists?
Which single word describes most effectively why Western countries, like the United States or the countries that make up the European Union, ignore what China does, including the abuses in Tibet?
The women below are dressed in traditional Tibetan clothing. What stands out to you the most about this style of dress? (This annotation contains an image)
Which of the following words does NOT describe how the author wants you to feel about what she and her companion are doing at the shareholders' meeting?
The photograph below is of some members of the House of Lords. What might be the impact of seeing someone dressed this way at a shareholders' meeting? (This annotation contains an image)
What is your opinion of the way Tibet awareness was handled in this situation? Explain your position by making reference to events mentioned in the text within your response.
A million British pounds is roughly $1.5 million in the United States. Imagine what a non-profit organization could do with that sum of money!
What does Isabel seem to have that Alison seems to lack?
In England, "MP" stands for Member of Parliament.
What do you think Martin Linton is implying here? Is he expressing concern for Tibet or is he tired of what Isabel is saying? What makes you think this? Explain your position by using details from the text.
Where have you heard this wording (or something similar) before?
What effect does it have when Isabel refers to Gedhun Choekyi Nyima as "a boy"?
In fiction, Steve's argument may represent the device known as reductio ad absurdum. Read the definition at the website and identify the parts of Steve's argument that might fit this description. (This annotation contains a link)
What are the pros and cons of this plan? Use what you have learned about it from the text as well as your own personal experience to develop your response.
The Daily Mirror is a British tabloid. You can visit their website below. After seeing some of the stories they carry on their site, can you think of an equivalent American website? (This annotation contains a link)
What would be the advantage to having this story run in a tabloid as opposed to a broadsheet?
When Isabel says, "Two bells rang in unison," she is speaking metaphorically -- the two bells are that the stunt is illegal and dangerous. Why would doing something illegal and dangerous be good for promoting her cause?
Which of the following things do Isabel and PS NOT need money for?
There is a subtle joke in this paragraph. Can you find it? If not, here's a hint: what did Isabel learn about website building after reading her book?
What is implied by PS getting a job in Dublin?
American actor Richard Gere is one of the most well known and outspoken supporters of Tibet. You can hear his opinions about China, the United States, and Tibet in the video below. (This annotation contains a video)
You can see what a daunting task Isabel has in front of her to start this company to help Tibet. Is it worth it, in your opinion? Why or why not? Be sure to support your position with facts from the novel.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to go skydiving? Many people feel the same way that Isabel does! You can read a humorous take on skydiving at the site below. How much of this would Isabel agree with? (This annotation contains a link)
How does Isabel tend to present all the challenges she faces?
Isabel is right -- the saying, "Money is the root of all evil" is one of the most popular statements about money. What is the difference between this version and the actual quote from scripture?
How is Isabel's rich American friend's rejection of a sponsorship likely representative of so many others, including people who may have already donated?
A Filofax is a particular brand of calendar, organizer, or datebook, as pictured below. (This annotation contains an image)
How do you know Isabel did not die, even if you don't read anymore of the book?
It's actually quite important that Isabel learn as much as she can about China's position on Tibet. This is one of the most important aspects of the art of persuasion -- understanding the opposition's point of view. It is not enough for Isabel to only understand the perspective of Tibet; she also needs to know the Chinese perspective in order to counter their points knowledgeably.
How is Isabel's approach here different from what she has done to educate herself about Tibet in the past?
The article below offers an interesting analysis of the "one-child policy." After reading the article, what is surprising about the secretary's family? (This annotation contains a link)
The video below offers a brief overview of the night the Berlin Wall came down. Can you see some of the excitement and hope Isabel mentions? (This annotation contains a video)
Before reading any further, predict how the Chinese ambassador might react to Isabel's questions. What makes you think he will respond in the way you anticipate? Be sure to support your ideas with evidence from the text. Then read on to see how close you came to being correct in your prediction.
How is the ambassador's and press secretary's response to this question unexpected?
You can learn more about Tenzin Delek Rinpoche at the website below. What actions are suggested on the website? Which of those actions have also been discussed in this book? (This annotation contains a link)
In the United States, we use the word "biscuit" to describe a bread roll often served with dinner. In England, the word means a kind of cookie.
How would the activities of the support organizations in the West be construed as counterproductive? Summarize the argument in your own words, making reference to points in the text to make the summary as clear as possible.
So is Taiwan part of China or not? The website below offers a brief overview of the history of this issue. (This annotation contains a link)
Why didn't Isabel ask Kesang Takla the questions highlighted here?
Greenpeace is an environmental action organization. Their website is below. Do they promote any causes that you care about? (This annotation contains a link)
Re-state in your own words what Isabel's purpose is in doing this stunt. Make reference to points in the text in your explanation.
Use the "Define" feature to see what treacle is. It should be clear that the author is using a metaphor here. What is she saying when she says, "I was wading through treacle..."?
How has Isabel finally come to reach this understanding?
Would you like to know what the Dalai Lama says about war? You can read one of his statements about violence and war at the website below. Is his belief stated so simply as advocating nonviolent resistance? (This annotation contains a link)
What does Isabel mean by the highlighted statement?
What Gary is going to do is called base jumping. This is parachuting from a fixed structure or cliff. What do you think are the dangers inherent with base jumping?
Which word would best describe Isabel's feelings about the stuntman doing the jump for her organization?
If you find Gary to be interesting, check out his website which includes videos of some of his stunts! (This annotation contains a link)
What is the author's purpose in explaining the process of her event the way she is structuring it in the text?
Isabel is rightly concerned -- there are a lot of things that could go wrong. Do a quick mental inventory of all the things that could possible go wrong to see if you can then identify with Isabel's anxiety.
Why do you think the new contact at Cunning Stunts is being so evasive? Explain your idea using information from the text to support your opinion.
In the United States, a solicitor is someone who sells things. However, the word has a different meaning here. Can you guess what it is using context clues? If not, you can use the "Define" feature to determine its meaning.
Why is Isabel so frustrated?
The apparatus, a Camalot, is pictured below. It is used in the cracks of rocks to help secure ropes. It sounds like a pretty important piece of equipment! (This annotation contains an image)
Which is NOT a reason Isabel is so anxious about this event?
While the URL has a different extension, the site below appears to be the same one Isabel Losada established. What do you think of her site? (This annotation contains a link)
If something were to go wrong, what do you think is most likely to happen? Why do you think that? Be sure to use information from the text to explain your point.
Free climbing is a type of rock climbing where the climber uses only equipment to help aid in case of a fall but not to assist with the ascent. How does this increase the tension of the stunt?
Do you think this event was a success or not? Explain your answer, referring to specific points in the text to develop your response.
The short video below shows Gary's jump. You can also see what Nelson's Column looks like to get an idea of what the climbers were ascending as well as the banner that was unfurled from the top. Does it all look the way you imagined it? (This annotation contains a video)
What does Isabel mean by this statement?
Before continuing on to the final section of the book, think about what the author has accomplished so far. What more can she do?
Why would there be "raucous laughter"?
Isabel is traveling to Delhi, India. Below, you can see see a monthly temperature breakdown for Delhi. Based on this, which months are best for her to be traveling? (This annotation contains a link)
Is this what you would have expected from Isabel upon seeing Khenpo again? Why or why not? Use what you know of Isabel, Khenpo, and their relationship to guide your response.
You can learn a little more about Gandhi by watching the trailer for the Academy Award winning movie about him; you might want to learn a lot more about him by watching the movie after you watch the trailer! (This annotation contains a video)
Why would Isabel think she has stupidity "by the bucket-load"?
The title Khenpo is usually awarded after thirteen years of study; it has been likened to a spiritual bachelor's degree.
How is this an example of hyperbole? What is the author attempting to say using the hyperbole?
Read about the literary device hyperbole at the website below. Then answer the question that follows. (This annotation contains a link)
In the United States, we are not accustomed to haggling. But there are some deals to be had by haggling. Read the article below and see if you get any ideas about what you can haggle for the next time you go shopping! (This annotation contains a link)
Why does setting the spelling to music seem effective?
Take a moment to read this article about how music affects your brain then answer the question that follows. (This annotation contains a link)
These are rules hanging in a classroom in India. Have you ever seen rules like this posted in any of your classes?
Which of the following is NOT a reason Isabel doesn't think she can eat chicken ever again?
Do you automatically trust your politicians, your elected officials? Isabel seems to subtly point out that the feeling of mistrust is something all people of all nations have in common. But what would she say is our advantage here in the West?
Which of the following is NOT something that frustrated Isabel during the interview?
Before reading about the woman Isabel interviewed, watch this short video of a Tibetan political prisoner speak about her experience. Then compare it with the experience you read about. (This annotation contains a video)
Which word might describe Isabel's reaction or feelings about hearing this girl's story of torture?
Does this sound like a book you might like to read? You can learn more about it at the site below. (This annotation contains a link)
What do you think of this musing from Isabel? Do you think what she says makes sense or is it silly to think that way? Critique her ideas here, making sure to use information form the text to build your response.
What is the benefit in meditating, according to Sue, Helen, and Ed?
The photo below pictures a refugee camp in Dharamsala. Does it look like what Isabel has described in the highlighted paragraph? (This annotation contains an image)
One woman having many husbands is an unusual idea to many Americans. It's even more unusual than the concept of one man having many wives. Americans tend to think of married people in terms of couples. What would be the advantages and disadvantages of having more than one spouse? Use information you have read here as well as your own ideas to formulate a response.
This is an example of a stereotype, which is when people hold a fixed but oversimplified idea of a person or group of people or even things. Can you think of other stereotypes?
Which word would best describe Isabel's questions for Samdhong Rinpoche?
In case you are not a fan of Harry Potter, you will need to know that muggles are humans without magical powers.
Isabel's parallel between the Panchen Lama and Harry Potter is fascinating. What is the advantage to making that parallel for people who don't know anything about the Panchen Lama and making that parallel using a reference that children in particular can identify with?
You can learn more about the Dalai Lama's escape from Tibet at the site below. What do you find most amazing about his journey? (This annotation contains a link)
What does Isabel mean when she says the Dalai Lama won't want to sit too close to "the likes of" her?
The Dalai Lama values Isabel's intentions as well as her actions. What makes her intentions just as good as her actions in terms of the work she has done for Tibet? Be sure to make specific references to Isabel's actions and results of her actions in your response.
The video below is an excerpt of an interview with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Do you hear him say anything in this interview that he also said to Isabel? (This annotation contains a video)
Which line from the highlighted paragraph best reflects the intention of the title of this novel, A Beginner's Guide to Changing the World?
Of all these ideas for getting involved, which one do you think Isabel would say would be the most meaningful?