Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls is a remarkable story about Jeannette’s life. She grew up with stubborn parents who were very poor and the family moved very often. They never had a place to call home. “We moved around like nomads. We lived in dusty little mining towns in Nevada, Arizona, and California. They were usually nothing but a tiny cluster of sad, sunken shacks, a gas station, a dry-goods store, and a bar or two” (19). Her father, Rex Walls was an alcoholic and would waste needed money on unnecessary items. “But Dad drank hard liquor only when we had money, which wasn’t often, so life was mostly good in those days” (23). However, when he was sober, he was a very smart and intelligent man. Her mother, Rose Mary Walls was a creative artist and enjoyed writing more then taking care of her four children. Jeannette lived through a rough life as a child. When money became short, the Walls family moved to West Virginia. Jeannette’s parents were not responsible enough to take care of a family so Jeannette and her siblings were forced to fend for themselves. She even managed to get a job and make her own money. After saving a lot of money in a safe, Jeannette found to her surprise that her father stole the money only to waste it on alcohol. The kids realized that it was not safe for them to live with their parents. Their mother and father could no longer provide good food to eat or clothes to wear. Jeannette’s older sister Lori was the first to escape. Soon, Jeannette and her other siblings moved to New York to join Lori. Jeannette did very well in High School and ended up at Barnard College. Even though the four children lived through a rough childhood that was hard to live through, they all managed to stay strong and pull through.

1. Despite everything, Jeannette Walls refuses to condemn her parents. If you were living in Jeannette’s shoes, how would you feel living with parents who did not take care of you? What actions would you take in order to take care of yourself? Would you still honor your parents?

2. As Jeannette grew older and lived in New York she still kept very close touch with her parents. They too later moved down to New York. If you were Jeannette would you still want to be close with your parents? Why?

15 comments:

Laura P 7-8 said...

2.) I would like to think that I would stay close with my parents even if they could not provide for me. I would also hope that I would forgive someone who stole money that I earned myself.

Kaitlyn K 7-8 said...

2) I would stay close with my parents simply because they were my parents and i grew so close with them before I knew that they were neglecting me.

Lisa T. 1-2 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lisa T. 1-2 said...

1. To anyone else, Jeannette's parents were inexcusably irresponsible. They didn't deserve the respect of their children, when they chose not to do what was best for those who relied on them. If I were Jeannette, though, it would probably be entirely different because they were my parents, and I would see them as heroes and believe in the good in them regardless of their mistakes.
2. In Jeannette's position, I would still want to be close to my parents, but hopefully I would understand that I should not be too trusting of them.

Avi D. 7/8 said...

1. If I were in Jeanette's place I would not judge or condemn my parents. They must have been going through a tough time just like I had. I would do the same as Jeanette and get myself an education to advance in life. However, I would come back and help my parents and not abandon them.

jessica b 1/2 said...

1. If I was in Jeanette's shoes, althouth I would know that they were terrible parents, I believe that it would be very hard to blame them since they are still my parents. I would do the best for myself, and then try to come back to help them.
2. I think I would still want to be close to my parents simply because they are my parents and eventually learn to forgive them.

Leah K. 7-8 said...

2. If I were her, I would still want to be close with my parents even though they did not take care of me. They are still my parents no matter what and I would like to be close with them again.

Heather B. 1-2 said...

1.) I think it is instinctive to want to forgive your parents, even if you realize their wrongdoings. I think, in her shoes, I would move, as she did, to fend for myself, but I would never stop loving my parents.

2.) I would try and stay close with them, because they too went through hard times and I would try to help them, once I was on stable ground.

Andrew C 7-8 said...

1) i would do everything possible to take care of myself with what i had or what i could find. I would also forgive my parents and try to help thm out even though they could not provide for me.

2) I would want to stay close to them because i know that they would have wanted me too even though they didnt just come out and say it. Also just because they didnt help me when i was little was no reason not to help them in New York.

Hannah K. 1-2 said...

1) I think I would resent my parents for a very long time, even if I could understand and sympathize with them. They obviously caused a hard life for their children.
2) As long as I was living my own life, and away from their influence, I would want to keep in touch with them, because no matter what, they would still be my parents, and had good intentions.

Sydney M 7-8 said...

1. If i was Jeannette, I would be mad and upset that my parents were too lame enough to not care of their own children. I would get a job, move out, and make a life for myself that would be better than what my parents could supply. Somewhat you would, your parents are your parents, so no matter what you are going to love them but it would be hard to honor them.

Brandon M. 1-2 said...

1. Wow, three questions in one. Nice! Well, I would feel very neglected and bitter towards uncaring parents, I would probably have to learn to take care of myself on my own (the hard way), and I do not think I could still find it in myself to honor my parents; after all, why would I?

2. I would not want to be close to parents like that because I would resent them very much.

Monica J. 1-2 said...

1. I dont think i would care because after them not caring for while you adapt and learn to take care of yourself. I would still respect them but id go out and get a job and figure out my life without caring about them being them for me or not.

Josie D 7/8 said...

2. I think I would still like to know my parents. Even though they did not always take care of me perfectly, they still took care of me when I was a baby and they are my parents. Even though they did not always have perfect sense about how to care for children, they did love me.

Mrs. Sherwood said...

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