Character Tracking Page



Essay Options for The Westing Game - Final Assessment (choose TWO)

1) You must use text evidence - see lesson below on how to include this in your essay

2) Your essays should be typed -- 3-5 paragraphs long, well-written and edited.



Resources to help you write your literary essays:


Example Literary Essays: The Hunger Games Essay (go to page 26)

*** How to Use Text Evidence in Your Essay:

Sample Introductions and Conclusions:


How to Write Your Body Paragraphs:







Chapter One--Sunset Towers

  1. What was unusual about Sunset Towers?
  2. What was unusual about Barney Northrup?
  3. Explain why Barney Northrup could be described as a very good salesman. How does he get all the apartments rented in just one day?
  4. List the various types of people that would be the new tenants in Sunset Towers.

Chapter Two--Ghosts or Worse

  1. Describe how Mr. Hoo felt about the grand opening of his restaurant.
  2. Why does Turtle propse the dare to go into the Westing House?
  3. Describe Otis Amber.
  4. What does Chris notice through his binoculars?

Chapter Three--Tenants In and Out

  1. Describe Mrs. Wexler's relationship with her two daughters. How does she treat them differently? Why?
  2. Describe J.J. Ford.
  3. According to Chris, what special talent did his brother Theo possess?
  4. Describe Sydelle Pulaski.
  5. What was in the long package that Sydelle Pulaski carried into her apartment? What is suspicious about her?

Chapter Four--The Corpse Found

  1. Why was Doug Hoo stationed outside the Westing house?
  2. Why did Turtle Wexler have her mother's silver cross in her pocket?
  3. What did Turtle encounter upon entering the house?
  4. Sam's obituary mentions that he was a dedicated gamesman and a master of chess. Why might this be significant?
  5. What happened to Sam Westing's daughter and wife?
  6. According to his obituary, what kind of person was Samuel Westing? Talk about several characteristics.
  7. Why were sixteen people asked to go to the south library of the Westing mansion?

Chapter Five--Sixteen Heirs

  1. Why was Turtle startled when she looked in the coffin?
  2. Why is Judge Ford surprised to see E.J. Plum in charge of the Westing estate?

Chapter Six--The Westing Will

  1. When the will is first read, why are those present shocked to hear the words, "my sixteen nieces and nephews"?
  2. What is the second important piece of information that is revealed during the reading of the will?
  3. What must the potential beneficiaries do if they wish to "strike it rich"?
  4. Explain Mr. Hoo's comment, "The poor are crazy, the rich just eccentric".

Chapter Seven--The Westing Game

  1. List the eight pairs playing the game.
  2. What are the rules of the game?
  3. What is the object of the game?
  4. Why did Madame Hoo and Jake Wexler have to forfeit their $10,000?
  5. How is Judge Ford feeling about being paired with Sandy and what is her concern (at the top of pg. 34)?
  6. What do the heirs think of their clues?

Chapter Eight--The Paired Heirs

  1. Why are the tenants trapped in the Sunset Towers?
  2. How was Turtle able to profit from the storm?
  3. What does everyone want from Sydelle Pulaski?
  4. How does Judge Ford feel about "the game"? What does Judge Ford think about Mr. Westing's real motives at this point?
  5. Make a 3-column chart showing each pair's clues and what they think they mean. What they do with their clues, if anything?
WG "Heir Pairs" Clues and Conclusions Chart (shared Google doc - make a copy!)
6. Do you have any ideas about what the clues could mean? Do you see any patterns in the clues?===============================================================================================================================

Chapter Nine--Lost and Found

  1. What is your favorite Lost and Found messages posted in the elevator? Why?
  2. Why is Mrs. Wexler nice to Turtle?
  3. Why does Turtle get upset and say “Let me out of here?”
  4. Who is hosting a party? Why? (your opinion)
  5. What is revealed about Mr. Hoo and Sam Westing?

Chapter Ten--The Long Party

  1. Write a one paragraph summary of Chapter 10.

  2. Why does Judge Ford refer to Grace Wexler as an “heiress” (with quotation marks)?
  3. Who is George Theodorakis staring at? Why do you think this might be?
  4. What can we infer about Jake Wexler in how he treated Mrs. Hoo?
  5. What do we learn new about Angela from this chapter? What 'inner conflict' does she reveal?
  6. What can you infer about how Angela is feeling in this chapter from her actions? State the action(s) and the inference(s).
  7. Quote an example of effective description in this chapter. Underline/highlight the adjectives in the quote.
  8. Why are the heirs disappointed at the end of the party?

Chapter Eleven--The Meeting

  1. What do we discover about Flora Baumbauch at the beginning of the chapter?
  2. What does Theo propose to the group in the coffeehouse?
  3. Why can’t anyone else understand Sydelle’s copy of the will?
  4. What does Mr. Hoo say about he and his partner's innocence?
  5. Why is there confusion about Turtle's real name at the meeting?
  6. Besides Judge Ford, which other heir has actually met Sam Westing?

Chapter Twelve--The First Bomb

  1. Describe what happens to Mrs. Theodorakis in the kitchen.
  2. What does Sydelle say is Turtle’s “crutch?” What do you think of this statement - what does it mean, do you agree?
  3. According to Judge Ford, who are the four people with a Westing connection?
  4. What is George Theodorakis' connection to Sam Westing?
  5. Why does Judge Ford's finger suddenly stop at the top of the list of detectives in the yellow pages?

Chapter Thirteen--The Second Bomb

Write a one paragraph summary of Chapter 13

What is notable (important/different) about the second bomb?

What do Theo and Angela talk about?

Who does Angela remind Flora Baumbach of?

Where will the bomber plant the next bomb?

Chapter Fourteen--Pairs Repaired

Where do Flora Baumbach and Turtle go?

Why was Alexander McSouthers fired from his job at the Westing factory?

What are Crow and Otis Amber discussing in the Wexler kitchen?

What has Theo discovered about where May God thy gold refine comes from?

Chapter Sixteen--The Third Bomb

  1. Describe Angela’s bridal shower.
  2. Does Angela do anything to suggest that she may already know the contents of the gift wrapped in gold foil?
  3. Describe Angela's injuries.
  4. What can you infer from Turtle's statement to Angela, "But that sure was a dumb thing to do."
  5. Who does Sydelle think the bomber is?
  6. Who do you think the bomber is? Explain your choice.

Chapter Seventeen--Some Solutions

  1. Why are the heirs jittery?
  2. What solution do Grace and Mr. Hoo come up with?
  3. What solution does Theo come up with?
  4. Describe the scene between Theo and Crow at the end of the chapter. What does Crow mean by her statements to Theo?

Chapter Eighteen--The Trackers

What does Turtle decide to do with their stocks?

What does Turtle decide to call Flora Baumbach?

Why does Turtle “feel like kicking somebody, anybody, good and hard” on page 104?

What do we learn about Rosalie? (FYI: “retarded” and “Mongoloid” are outdated, offensive terms to describe someone with Down Syndrome)

Who is Doug following and why?

What does Otis deliver to the heirs?

How does Denton Deere propose to help Chris?


Chapter Nineteen--Odd Relatives

Who does Otis feel the bomber is?

Why does Crow visit Mr. Hoo? What does he give her?

What do we learn about Crow?

What does Chris think is in the blank envelope in his bathrobe? What is actually in the envelope?

What is the confusion about Grace Wexler’s maiden name?

According to the judge, what (or who) is Westing's first mistake?

Chapter Twenty-Two--Losers, Winners

Read the last paragraph on page 132 very carefully. What can you infer about Madame Hoo?

Why would it be difficult to recognize Sam Westing now?

Which of the heirs does Judge Ford think may be Sam Westing's former wife?

What does Judge Ford think was actually in Sam Westing’s coffin?

Define the following words: scrimp, tousled, wreak, pompous




Chapter Twenty-Six--Turtle's Trial

What was the identity of the limper Chris saw going into the Westing house on Halloween morning?

Why is everyone surprised when Otis Amber testifies? (What surprising new information does he tell them?)

Which two heirs did Otis Amber NOT investigate for Judge Ford?

What does Turtle figure out on page 169?


Chapter Twenty-Seven--A Happy Fourth

What is to happen to Sunset Towers according to Westing's "last" document?

Which heir wins and explain how they finally solve the puzzle?


Journal Entry 10-22




"Who's On First" Video






Chapter Fifteen--Fact and Gossip


What is Mrs. Wexler’s idea for the new name of Shin Hoo’s Restaurant?


How do Sandy and Judge Ford differ in their descriptions of what Mrs. Westing looked like?


What happened to Violet Westing? What would it mean for Angela if Violet’s story is being replayed?




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Chapter Eighteen--The Trackers


What does Turtle decide to do with their stocks?


Why does Turtle “feel like kicking somebody, anybody, good and hard” on page 104?


What do we learn about Rosalie? (FYI: “retarded” and “Mongoloid” are outdated, offensive terms to describe someone with Down Syndrome)


Who is Doug following and why?


How does Denton Deere propose to help Chris?




Chapter Nineteen--Odd Relatives


What do we learn about Crow?


What does Chris think is in the blank envelope in his bathrobe? What is actually in the envelope?


What is the confusion about Grace Wexler’s maiden name?


According to the judge, what (or who) is Westing's first mistake?




Chapter Twenty--The Confessions


Why is it significant that the price of Westing Paper Products stock reached $52 per share?


What does George Theodorakis tell Judge Ford about Violet Westing?


Who does Judge Ford believe must be protected and why? What do you think about this?




DUE FRIDAY:


Chapter Twenty-One--The Fourth Bomb


What does Theo see Otis and Crow doing?


What is Judge Ford's connection with the Westing family?


What was on the reverse side of the bomber's note?


Why do you think Turtle set the bomb in the elevator?


Vocabulary: derelicts, singed




Chapter Twenty-Two--Losers, Winners


Read the last paragraph on page 132 very carefully. What can you infer about Madame Hoo?


Why would it be difficult to recognize Sam Westing now?


Which of the heirs does Judge Ford think may be Sam Westing's former wife?


What does Judge Ford think was actually in Sam Westing’s coffin?


Vocabulary: scrimp, pompous




Chapter Twenty-Three--Strange Answers


What did Otis mean by the phrase, “The turtle's lost its tail?”


Why is Grace acting strangely?


Several people are given “positions” they don’t remember writing. Why might this be?


Which answer do you think is closest to the truth? Why?


Vocabulary: ornithologist, slurred




Chapter Twenty-Four--Wrong All Wrong


Which heir does Judge Ford realize is actually Sam Westing?


Why does she change her mind later in the chapter?


Using the clues provided, who does Sydelle Pulaski announce as the murderer?


Which heir gives the answer at the end of the chapter? Do you think she’s telling the truth? Why or why not?




Chapter Twenty-Five--Westing's Wake


Who is the only person Turtle has kicked today?


Who was Theo playing chess with? Why is this surprising?


What are the two meanings of “the Queen’s Sacrifice”?


Why does Turtle think “the game is still on”?


Vocabulary: wake, dastardly




Chapter Twenty-Six--Turtle's Trial


What was the identity of the limper Chris saw going into the Westing house on Halloween morning?


Why is everyone surprised when Otis Amber testifies? (What surprising new information does he tell them?)


Which two heirs did Otis Amber NOT investigate for Judge Ford?


What does Turtle figure out on page 169?




Chapter Twenty-Seven--A Happy Fourth


What is to happen to Sunset Towers according to Westing's "last" document?


Which heir wins and explain how they finally solve the puzzle?




Chapter Twenty-Eight--And Then. . .


Whose wedding is Turtle going to be late for if she doesn't hurry and make her move?


How did Judge Ford intend to repay her debt to Sam Westing?


Describe the changes in Angela's life.


Vocabulary: heirloom




Chapter Twenty-Nine--Five Years Pass


What good things had happened to Chris Theodorakis?


Who was the chess game master that T.R. Wexler had finally defeated?


Vocabulary: correspondent, radiant




Chapter Thirty--The End


Who is dying at the opening of the final chapter?


What is the irony of Jake Wexler's new position?


Vocabulary: orthopedic, audible






Panel Discussion Questions


  1. Who was your character partner and what did you think of them and how did you react to being partnered with them?
  2. What did you think about the Westing Game?
  3. What was on your mind when the power went out?
  4. How did you react/how were you affected by the bombings?
  5. What was your alibi during the bombings?
  6. What was the first thing you thought when Mrs.Theodorakis came out of the kitchen dripping in "blood"/tomato sauce after the first bombing?
  7. What was your reaction when you found out Sam Westing wasn't really dead?
  8. Who did you think would win the Westing Game?
  9. How did you react to the reading of the will?
  10. Who did you think killed Sam Westing after the reading of the will?