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Teaching The Glass Menagerie with Castle Learning

September 3, 2019

/ by

Jeff Hersh


Tennessee Williams’ play, The Glass Menagerie, was first performed in 1944 and continues to be studied and performed regularly.  It is considered a “memory play” as the story is told from the view of Tom Wingfield about his time working and supporting his mother and sister in the city of St. Louis in 1937. Tom’s father abandoned the family years ago and his mother continues to hold on to impossible expectations for her adult children in the face of their struggles.  


The play delves into the theme of unlikely dreams of a better life that offer escape from reality, but don’t allow for actual change. The past and how it colors the expectations of the present and future keeps the characters from being able to realize what they need to improve their current lives.  


With Castle Learning, teachers can access 129 questions about The Glass Menagerie. Teachers will find a combination of question types available to assess comprehension of the play including multiple choice, short answer, fill-in-the-blank, and constructed/extended response.


Questions are broken down into sections by acts.   Here is the breakdown of topical questions:

  • Scene 1: Focus on Amanda
  • Scene 2: Focus on Laura
  • Scene 3: Focus on Tom
  • Scene 4: Amanda asks Tom to find a gentleman caller
  • Scene 5: Tom announces that someone will be coming to dinner
  • Scene 6: The gentleman caller arrives
  • Scene 7: The gentleman caller leaves

Teachers can use the content in any way that helps them teach the play. They can even input their own questions, allowing complete control over how they guide students to explore and create meaning from the text.


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