1. Nicodemus explains to Mrs. Frisby that he was
to be Dr. Schultz's prisoner and his pupil for the next three years.
Explain how he could be both of these.
Possible Answer: He was both because he was learning many new
things, but he was not doing it because he chose to. Nichodemus and
all of the rats were prisoners in cages who were being used for
2. The rats are divided into three groups, Group
A, B, and C. Write a paragraph explaining a time you were part of a
group (outside of school), and your experiences within the group.
Possible Group: I remember being one of three girls on a
soccer team. We were the only girls! The whole team was a
group, but the three of us were our own group. We had to be.
Even though the coach treated us all alike, the boys on the team
didn't. When the coach wasn't listening the boys made fun of us
saying we shouldn't even be on the team. We had to form our own
group, or we wouldn't have made it through the whole season. We
supported each other in many ways. We stuck together, encouraged
each other, and even got together for extra practices. By the end of
the season our team won the league championship. I really believe
this happened because we were strong enough to stick together and make the
3. Dr. Schultz was not surprised when Justin
escaped. He expected it to happen. Why do you think he was not
Possible Answer: Dr. Schultz was conducting an experiment with
the rats and mice. Animals are used in laboratories all over the
world for medical reasons. He was giving them injections and
watching for their reactions. I think he actually hoped they would
escape, because then he would know that the mice and rats were getting
smarter and smarter.
4. The rats in Group A showed no signs of aging
due to the injections they were receiving. What injection/injections
have you received in your life that have kept you healthy?
Possible Answer: When I was little I had to get shots. I'm
not sure what they were, but they were given to keep me healthy. I
think some of them must have been injections for mumps and measles because
kids don't get either of those. My mom said I cried every time she
brought me in for my baby shots.
5. The rats are being taught to read.
Compare their reading instruction to the way you learned to read.
Possible Answer: The rats learned to read by watching a screen
and listening to Julie's voice on a record. They really didn't
understand they were learning to read because they did not know what
reading was. That is how it is different from when I learned how to
read. I knew what it was. My parents read to me when I was
little and explained to me what reading was. They even started
teaching me before I went to school. The part of how I learned to
read that is like how the rats learned, is learning the alphabet.
When I learned the letters of the alphabet, I looked at pictures of things
that began with each letter. Like a-apple, b-balloon and so
6. Do you agree or disagree with Justin's decision
to release the mice? Why?
Possible Answer: I agree with Justin's decision. I think I
would have done the same thing. Justin knew how much he wanted to
escape and showed kindness to others when he released the mice.
Perhaps some day the mice will be able to repay him in some way.