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The Secret Garden
by Frances Hodgson Burnett
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1.Describe Mary Lennox when she first arrived at Misselthwaite Manor. Would you have wanted to be friends with her? Why or why not?
2.Why did the Crawfords’ children call her “Mistress Mary Quite Contrary”?
3.What is the French fairy tale Mary remembers, Riquet a la Houppe? How is it similar to Mary’s story?
4.What was the situation between England and India at the time this story took place? (19th c.) How did it affect the way Mary was brought up?
5.How is Mary’s new home in England different from her old one in India? How are they the same?
6.Who is Dickon, and why do you think Mary is so fascinated by him?
7.Who did Mary meet in the garden? How are Mary and Ben Weatherstaff alike? Why do you think the robin decided to make friends with Mary?
8.Do you think it matters whether or not you like yourself? Why or why not?
9.How did Mary find the door to the secret garden?
10.What was Dickon doing when Mary finally met him in person? Would you wan to be Dickon’s friend? Why or why not?
11.What does it mean to be “wick”? How did Mary and Dickon check the rose trees to see if they were still alive?
12.Why are both Colin and the garden “locked up”?
13.Why was Martha so frightened when she found out that Mary had met Colin?
14.Why did Dickon think it would be good for Colin to visit the secret garden?
15.Why was Colin so upset when Mary decided to go out to the garden instead of coming to visit him? Why did the nurse say that Mary’s getting him upset was good for Colin?
16.What is it that scares Colin so much?
17.What are the names of Dickon’s animals?
18.Why did Mary wait so long to tell Colin that she had gotten into the secret garden? Have you ever had a secret that you could only tell if you knew you could trust someone—for sure?
19.Why can’t Colin walk? Is there anything you thought you couldn’t do, until you did it and discovered you could? How did it feel?
20.Who discovered the children in their secret garden? What did Ben Weatherstaff say that made Colin stand up?
21.Do you think Dickon is Magic? Why or why not?
22.What did Mary and Colin decide to do inside on rainy days? What would you do in a house with 100 rooms that no one ever went into? How are all those empty rooms like the secret garden?
23.Why did Colin decide to uncover the portrait of his mother?
24.What new things were discovered in the 20th century? What new things do you think will be discovered during the 21st? How did new things help Mary and Colin?
25.What finally brought Mr. Archibald Craven out of his melancholy?
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