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Trapped by Michael Northrop

Mitchell Gardner's Prezi proejct about the book Trapped for 8th grade lamguage arts. Date: 12/17/12.

Mitchell Gardner

on 1 January 2013

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Transcript of Trapped by Michael Northrop

A SHORT SUMMARY Writer's Craft 0 + - = 9 8 7 1 2 3 4 5 6 c The Setting The book Trapped takes place inside of Tattawa High School, a small New England school, during modern times. When the book begins, snow is falling moderately hard during the school day. As the snow begins to pile up, school is let out and only 7 kids are left waiting for their parents to pick them up in the cold, empty, soon-to-be-buried school. Scotty Weems Scotty Weems is the main protagonist of the novel Trapped. The book is told through his eyes as a typical high school sophomore student. Being a typical sophomore student, he is an athletic member of the basketball team. Another typical adolescent trait that Scotty possesses is being judgemental. For example, a kid that goes to Scotty's school dresses in darker clothes and is very quiet. Scotty just assumed that he was Goth. Later, Scotty discovered that the kid, Elijah, was not Goth. In addition, Scotty is a loyal friend. He stayed late in the cold, empty school for no other reason than to help his friend with his shop project. Conflict The main conflict of the book, Trapped, is seven very different high school students vs. the most severe blizzard in the history of the lower 48 states. This specific conflict is an example of the general conflict type known as character(s) vs. nature/enviroment. And The Theme Is... Michael Northrop invites the reader to explore how the ingenuity of ordinary people can shine when they are in extraordinary situations. In other words, when people are put into a situation that they have had no prior experience in, they will show that they can make the best of what they know and the resources around them to survive. The seven ordinary students that became trapped in their school did not have any prior survival skills, yet they were able to survive using their ingenuity. Figurative Language Michael Northrop uses figurative language many times throughout this book including on page 99: "...feeling my way along the walls and lockers like a mole in ski gloves." A mole is a unique animal that navigates underground without the use of vision. Comparing Scotty, with this simile, to a mole leaves an impression on the reader because it shows the severity of the situation: it is so dark that the characters cannot see a thing. In addition, a mole is a wild animal trying to survive in nature just like the students are trying to survive in their school. Imagery Even though there were no pictures in the book Trapped, I was still able to visualize the events happening using the descriptive writing of Michael Northrop. An example that I found of clear imagery is the passage: "Within an hour it was snowing full force again, as if someone was up on the roof pushing it off by the shovelful. (nook p. 111/177) Scotty Weems (continued) Scotty's loyalty to his friend put him into the very precarious situation of being trapped in the school during a blizzard. This unique situation brought out some additional characteristics that further define who Scotty is. First, the group of kids had to work together to survive and this truly showed how cooperative Scotty could be. For example, when Jason suggested to designate a separate room for the fire to be made in, some of the others argued that a fire in their main room would be warmer. However, Scotty was cooperative and did not argue as he helped build the makeshift fire. Another trait that swam to the surface was his bravery. Towards the end, a shocking turn of events startles the reader, but does not stop Scotty from putting a risky and treacherous plan into action. You will have to read the book to discover how truly brave he is. Trapped
Written by Michael Northrop Situationally, the main conflict is the struggling of 7 students to survive inside of a school until they are rescued from the worst blizzard in the history of the continental United States. When the storm didn't let up, and the school was being buried deeper and deeper, the students then realized that they needed to survive longer before they were going to be rescued. This main conflict fits into the story because all of the actions that the students take, from chapter 7 on, are made to better their chances of survival until rescue. For example, breaking into the cafeteria to get food and rummaging through lockers to find more warm clothes both had the intentions of lengthening their survival time in the school. For example, to break into the cafeteria and other classrooms, Les used a hammer and chisel to break the cylinder of the lock. Even though Les had no idea how to break the lock on a school door, he found the hammer and chisel from the shop to use as tools and used his knowledge that a lock needs the cylinder to actually lock a door. Another character that showed ingenuity in this time of crisis was Jason. The students were in need of more blankets to keep them warm so Jason: "...found another blanket in a cupboard in the shop. It was made to throw over chemical fires and not for comfort, but..." (nook p. 114/177). Jason would not use a chemical fire blanket for warmth or comfort ordinarily, but during this extraordinary situation his ingenuity deemed it the best option with the resources that were available. Trapped contains many more examples of its characters finding clever ways to use the resources around them to survive. These ideas leave the reader thinking about how they might use the resources around them to survive in a similar situation, thus creating a theme that plays with the reader's imagination. This example really helped me picture and feel the weather as if I were there in Tattawa High School. I have shoveled snow myself and have experience with how much a shovelful of snow is. I can just picture that much snow dumping from the sky and can feel how heavy the snow piling up outside was. With such a sharp image of the conditions around the students, I could not help but feel both sad and scared for them A second example of figurative language that Michael Northrop uses is an onomatopoeia found on page 99. He makes the character Jason say "Mmmm" because he is trying turn a very tight bolt with a monkey wrench. This is the grunting noise that Jason would make, therefore it shows the reader just how hard that bolt was to turn. A third and final example of figurative language that I found was on page 105: "Anyway, by the time the smell of smoke started creeping under the door, I think we were all a little glad." This is an example of personification because smoke is not a human, but, in this case, is able to preform the human action of creeping. In this case, the author is simply trying to convey that the smoke traveled under the door stealthily and was not noticed. The turning point in the book, Trapped, takes place on the fifth day when Pete decides to sneak out while everybody is sleeping and drag Jason's snowmobile contraption upstairs. Does he intend to escape and leave the others stranded by themselves? Read the book to find out. The book Trapped is a suspenseful book that holds the reader's attention as seven students attempt to survive inside of a high school during the worst blizzard in the history of the continental United States. As the intensity of the storm increases, Tattawa High School makes the decision to send the students home early. Scotty and his friends decide to stay late to work on a shop class project and end up waiting for their parents with four other students and a teacher named Mr. Gossel. A little hint... As soon as Mr. Gossel realized that the snow was not going to let up, he decided to venture out on his own in search of help. After fastening his snow boots and securing his parka, Mr. Gossel forced the door open and headed outside. All seven of the kids watched Mr. Gossel from inside the school until he disappeared behind a four foot drift of snow, never to be heard from again. Shortly after Mr. Gossel headed out on his own, and everyone knew that the storm wasn't going to stop anytime soon, the group of kids came to a conclusion: they would need to sleep in the school. Just as they were gathering their belongings out of their lockers, the power went out and the emergency lights illuminated the halls. Scotty and his friends now knew that, without the power or the heat, their survival was about to become a lot harder. Two days later, the power was not close to coming back on and the group of students discovered that the water pipes had frozen. They needed water to survive. After a brief brainstorming session, the suggestion to make a fire came up. This seemed like an excellent way to stay hydrated because a fire could easily turn snow, which the students had plenty of, into water. Some precautions were taken and equipment from the shop had to be hauled up, but eventually a controlled , ventilated fire was created. On fourth day in the school, Julie came running into the room that the students were using for sleeping. She was sobbing and the front of her jacket was torn open. It was hard to understand her words, she was so scared. She just kept talking really fast and saying the word "less" over and over. Pete thought that she was saying "Les," the name of one of the kids that was trapped in the school with them. Thinking that Les had attacked Julie, Pete ran downstairs and started a fight with Les. Just after Les tore Pete apart, Scotty arrived and nursed Pete as Jason pulled Les out of the room. Scotty had realized that Julie had ripped her jacket while wandering in the dark downstairs. He figured that she was trying to say "less light" because it was dark, not "Les" A fight like this was bound to create tension between the seven kids. Thank you for watching my presentation. Created by Mitchell Gardner
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