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Granny Torrelli Makes Soup
by Sharon Creech
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1.This book is written in very short chapters. Did you like it this way? Why or why not?
2.Do you have a grandparent who cooks any special dishes like Granny Torrelli does? If you say yes, tell us more about the food. Is it something you eat only at holidays or special occasions? What is it made of?
3.Do you know someone who has a disability? Someone who is blind like Bailey? Or maybe someone who is deaf or in a wheelchair? Does that person's being different make a difference to you? Why or why not?
4.How does Bailey's blindness affect his friendship with Rosie? How might their relationship be different than a friendship between two people who can both see?
5.Janine is the new girl who moves in up the street. Have you ever been a new girl? If so, what was it like to try to make friends with people who already had friends?
6.Why do you think Rosie is so jealous of Janine, the new girl?
7.When Rosie first introduces herself to the new girl, Janine tells Rosie it's "strange" she has a boy for a best friend. Do you think it's strange? Why or why not?
8.Granny Torrelli doesn't just make soup, she makes sense. What does she say or do that seems to be a secret recipe for smoothing things over?
9.Why do you think Granny Torrelli told Rosie and Bailey about her jealousy of Violetta and about her friend Pardo being jealous of Marco?
10.Granny Torrelli tells Rosie and Bailey she cut Violetta's hair because she was jealous that Pardo paid so much attention to the new girl. Do you think Granny Torrelli would have felt good if the haircut had made Violetta look ugly? Why or why not?
11.Even though it has been so many years, why do you think Granny Torrelli still regrets the loss of her friendship with Pardo? What do you think she might do differently if she could do things over again?
12.Why do you think Rosie and Bailey are so shocked that Granny Torrelli behaved like a "monster girl" when she was young?
13.Do you like to cook? If so, what things do you like to make?
14.Making and eating food is a big part of this story. Why do you think food is such a big deal to Rosie and her family?
15.To explain how she feels, Rosie says sometimes she is a tiger, a fox, or an ice queen. What do you think it feels like to be a tiger? a fox? or an ice queen? Have you ever felt like any of these?
16.Look at the three different covers for our book that are shown on the handout. Which do you think is best? Why?
17.Rosie spent a whole year learning Braille in secret to surprise Bailey. Why do you think she wanted it to be a surprise? And why do you think Bailey became so upset?
18.Why do you think Bailey was okay with teaching Braille to Janine when he had been so upset with Rosie for learning it? How might the story have been different if Rosie had asked Bailey to teach Braille to her instead of learning it by herself?
19.Rosie learns important lessons while preparing the soup and pasta with Granny Torrelli. What do you think Rosie learns from sharing those meals with other people?
20.Rosie feels very protective of her friendship with Bailey. Why do you think she suggests to Bailey that they invite Janine to the pasta party even though she usually likes to keep him all to herself?
21.When Rosie and Bailey put on the play about the father and mother, Bailey gets very upset. Why? What do the things he says playing father tell you about his real father? (See the chapter beginning on page 28 if you don't remember.)
22.Both Rosie and Granny Torrelli tell stories involving a dog. Compare their two stories. How are their experiences similar? Different? (See the chapters beginning on page 34 for Granny's story or page 39 for Rosie's story, if you don't remember.)
23.When she was younger, Rosie was being picked on by two older girls on the way home from school, and Bailey came to her rescue. Why do you suppose this was a big deal to Rosie? And what do you suppose it meant to Bailey?
24.If Bailey suddenly was able to see well, how do you think his and Rosie's friendship would change? Imagine what it would be like for them to attend the same high school.
25.Why do you think Granny Torrelli tells the story about the sick baby?
26.Why do you think food makes it easier for the people in this story to communicate and connect? And is that true in real life, too?
27.Early in the book, Rosie wants to help Bailey and do everything for him to keep him safe, but by the end she has changed her mind. What influenced her opinion?
28.On the first page of the book, Rosie says that when Bailey told her to "get over yourself," she told Bailey back, "you get over your own self." But on page 64, when she finally tells Granny Torrelli what really happened, she says she "had no words" in her when Bailey slammed the door. Why do you think Rosie at first remembered that she had talked back to Bailey when he was so angry?
29.Why do you think Granny Torrelli takes a couple of "pauses" while making pasta? Did she really just need to go to the bathroom? Or might there have been another reason?
30.In the end, Rosie realizes that she cannot control who will be her best buddy, and she feels a sense of relief. Why do you think she feels so relieved? What are other feelings she could have felt instead?
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