The House on Mango Street Exam

You will have the whole period (50 minutes) to finish this test. The test is divided into four categories of questions: multiple choice and true/false, vocabulary, short answer, and essay. Please read over all the directions carefully. Make sure you use your time wisely—you should leave about 15 minutes to complete the essay. When you are done with your test, please turn it over, raise your hand and I will come pick it up. Good luck!

Section 1: Multiple Choice and True/False—There is only one correct answer

1. What is the heritage of the author, Sandra Cisneros?

a. Mexican

b. Latino

c. Puerto Rican

d. Peruvian


Your answer ________


2. In English, “Esperanza” means:  

a. Summer

b. Love

c. Faith

d. Hope


Your answer ________


3. This book takes place in:

a. New York

b. San Francisco

c. Chicago

d. Los Angeles


Your answer ________



4. The girls in Esperanza's neighborhood often try to escape their lives by:

a. Running away

b. Getting married

c. Going to school

d. Getting a job


Your answer ________



5. Which body part does Esperanza fixate on as a symbol of her unattractiveness?

a. Her nose

b. Her hair

c. Her feet

d. Her hips


Your answer ________


6.  What does Esperanza wish for above all else?

a. A house

b. Money

c. Someone to love her

d. A new car


Your answer ________


7. What do the old ladies tell Esperanza at the funeral of Rachel and Lucy's baby sister?

a. To escape from Mango Street as quickly as she can

b. That she will never escape from Mango Street

c. That she must come back to Mango Street to help those who can't leave

d. To get married and stop thinking so much


Your answer ________


8. Esperanza’s first job was working at a grocery store (T/F)


Your answer ________


9. Abuelito is Spanish for grandfather (T/F)


Your answer ________


10. At the end of the book, Esperanza leaves Mango Street (T/F)


Your answer ________


Section 2: Vocabulary—Write a sentence (or two) defining each word

1. Canteen


2. Babushka


3. Ferocious


4. Rosette


5. Anemic


Section 3: Short Answer— Write three to five sentences to answer each question

1. Why do you think it is important for Esperanza to one day have her own house?  What could the house for which she longs symbolize in her life?






2. Why do you think the author focuses a lot on violence within the novel?  Discuss a particular scene that included such violence and briefly explain its significance to the rest of the book.





3. What role does death play in The House on Mango Street? How do the many deaths in the novel relate to one another, and how do they influence Esperanza’s identity?





Section 4: Essay—Choose ONE of the essay questions and answer it in a well constructed response (at least one paragraph)

1. In what way has writing played a major part in Esperanza’s life?  How has it helped her to become both distant and close to her neighborhood at the same time? How has it helped her to find who she is as an individual?

2. How has Esperanza’s identity been shaped by the events that have happened to her or to others?  How have the people in her life impacted who she becomes at the end of the book?  Is she the same person she was at the beginning?  Why or why not?