From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
by EL Koningsburg
Book Discussion for Grades 2-4
Snacks: hot dogs or bologna on crackers, chocolate coins
1. Why does Claudia pick Jamie to run away with? (He has money saved up; has a transistor radio; she probably likes him the best.)
2. How do Claudia and Jamie get more money? (They find it in the fountain when they take a bath there.)
3. What is the name Jamie uses for the post office box? (Angelo Michaels) Why? (It's based on Michelangelo; Jamie didn't want to use his own name.)
4. Why don't Claudia and Jamie ask one of the children in the museum to deliver their letter to the office? (The children are in Jamie's class from school.)
5. What do you think Claudia was running away from? (Possible: boredom, chores, lack of excitement and adventure, herself.)
6. Have you ever wanted to escape or run away from something you didn't like? Do you think Claudia and Jamie were fair to their family when they ran away? How do you think Mr. and Mrs. Kincaid felt when Claudia and Jamie ran away?
7. How do you feel about the way Jamie wins in cards against Bruce? How do you think friends should treat one another?
8. What section of the museum would you have chosen to study?
9. Claudia and Jamie talk about homesickness. Have you ever been homesick? How would you define it?
10. Claudia says, “When you hug someone, you learn something else about them. An important something else.” What do you think she means?
11. How do experts determine the authenticity of an artwork? (They gather evidence like sketches, diaries, sales records, and see what tools were used and how.)
12. Is Mrs. Frankweiler the way you expected she would be? Why or why not?
13. Why isn't a secret much fun if no one knows you have it?
Create art based on some of the great masters and then hang pictures up for your own “museum”
Science experiments with coins (making shiny pennies) or math-money activities
Scholastic Discussion Guide
Nancy Poulette’s Literature Guide
PIGS SPACE: Space to Space Interactions