- Why are the boys so upset about the girls carrying the water bucket?
Carrying the water bucket in this story represents strength and power. The boys want to be strong and powerful people and look for the importance in being that strong person. They don’t want the girls to break that power they had. They got to leave the school house, and sneak into the store, and do something “real”
- What strategies do the boys use to pressure the girls into giving in? How do the girls react?
The boys use violence to try to pressure the girls to give in. They bully them, threaten them, and tease them. They also try to kick them out of the things they love like softball. The girls realize that they need them as fielders, so they were patient on coming back in, realizing their power. Alma’s cousin tries to get her out of carrying, the water, but she thinks they need someone to stick together. The girls react by becoming stronger and becoming closer with each other to try to fight back.
- Who is telling the story? What does she think of Ms. Ralston and the conflict over the water? From what point of view is the story told?
The story is told by one of the background girls and alma’s seatmate. She thinks Ms. Ralston doesn’t know what is going on between the two groups. When the teacher comes in and hits the ball out of the park, they are hopeful that they might be able to make a change in the system. The point of view is limited omniscient. The story is told from a character who doesn’t have a main character roll in the story and we still have access to her thoughts.
- What is the setting? How does the setting intensify the conflict? What kind of conflict is it?
The setting in in an old one room school house. The school house is near a railroad station that is used to get the water. The live-in Ontario, because of the maple leaves hockey team, and the mood is frustrated at first but hopeful as the plot changes, with determination. Since they live in an old town, in other towns the girls can do a lot more like the boys do, so the girls know what they might get if they fight for it, making them fight harder. Ms. Ralston also knows what it is like in the big cities because she is from there. This could be a person vs society conflict.
- Who is the protagonist? How do you know?
The protagonist in this story is Alma Niles. She was the bold one who asked for the water bucket for girls to carry and forced the changed. Alma was also the one to do all the talking and who got picked on most by the boys.
- In what way, did everything change on that Friday? What is the significance of what Ms. Ralston did in the last paragraph? What is the message the author is exploring?
On that Friday where everything changed, the boys and girls have more equality and power. They have more strength together from all the actions leading up to the change. The boys now don’t have power over the water, and can’t brag about the privilege and strength that they have. When Ms. Ralston hits the ball out of the park, it showed the boys that girls can play baseball too, and be just as good and just as strong. Girls are just as capable as boys.