Everyone busts their guts laughing at Dad’s reenactments and embellishments, except Byron who has to play too cool for school. The book opens with Kenny and his family trying to make it through an extremely bitter cold day in Flint, Michigan all of them huddled up on the couch under a blanket but that does little to keep them warm and neither does the several layers of clothes they are wearing. Kenny goes to school at Clark elementary, where Larry Dunn is the big bully who lords over everyone from kindergarten to fourth grade. Kenny still can’t figure out what is up with him. Joey tells a story where he leads her back to Grandma Sands. The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963 is an easy enough read that you could whiz through it in an afternoon. Byron had begun this behavior this the previous night, teaming up with Buphead, his partner in crime. (When he was in second grade, a teacher once had him read passages of Langston Hughes's work to Byron's fifth grade class.) GradeSaver, 11 October 2015 Web. Everyone scatters to find Joey as the news comes in that her church had just been bombed, only Kenny couldn’t move. When Kenny tries to revel in Byron’s victory of killing the bird, Byron lashes out at Kenny. Christopher Paul Curtis . 200. It is not until later in the novel that the story will break free of this vignette structure and move into a plot with chapters that flow logically together; for now, readers are simply invited to get to know the Watsons through Kenny's short accounts of their experiences. Kenneth, his older, juvenile delinquent brother Byron, his sweet, younger sister Joetta (called Joey), and his parents, Daniel and Wilona Watson, huddle on the couch attempting to keep warm. If only she had married Hambone Henderson back home in Alabama, well that’s dad’s name for him at least; too bad all of his warnings about igloo living were not enough to keep her in the Jim Crow South. He is so happy he can relinquish the title of easiest target for teasing that he calls the poor souls his saviors from God. 0% average accuracy. They also had Kenny spin around and try to keep his balance before pushing him into a snow bank. Summary; The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 is a YA historical fiction novel by American writer Christopher Paul Curtis, published in 1995. Wilona, the mother, was not born in Flint; she was born down south in Alabama and moved up to Michigan to be with her husband, Daniel. Not affiliated with Harvard College. The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 was Curtis’s first book. Because of her obsession with fighting off the frigid air, Kenny and Joey had to suffer on their trips back and forth to school wearing several layers of clothing that was a pain to change in and out of once they got there and when it was time to leave. a. The Watsons Go to Birmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis, begins with an introduction to the Watson family in Flint, Michigan, during a particularly cold winter. 0 times. This novel is primarily about a family, the Watsons, so even though this story is told from Kenny's perspective, the other members of his family are just as important to the narrative as he is. Daniel: (Dad) the father of the 3 siblings and the husband of Wilona. all of the chapters of The Watsons go to Birmingham in just in short summaries. The parents' relationship is set up clearly, too. To take the edge off the icy exterior that has formed about Momma’s attitude, Dad retells how he ended up with her instead of that Hambone. Momma threatens By with burning his fingers if she catches him playing with matches again. In the middle is Kenny, the protagonist, who is ten. Spell. While they are back there, Byron shoots one of the cookies at a bird and kills it. The real god of the school, though, is Byron; he is in the sixth grade still, because he flunked a grade at least once. When the church bomb goes off, she avoids it because of Kenny’s love and protection of her. Kenny goes out to sit with him and asks if Byron really has to go to Alabama. Kenny is determined for some country-time, Fantastic Adventure and shucks the warning. Vanity can be harmful to your health and Byron learns that the hard way. In chapter one of The Watsons Go to Birmingham, we have learned about the Watson family which is made up of Mom, Dad, Joey, Byron and Kenny, who is the narrator. The Watsons' close family bonds will undoubtedly prove to be an essential element of this story as it moves along. A jar of Vaseline is what Momma uses to help re-grow the skin on Byron’s lips after that accident with those lips and the driver’s side mirror in sub-zero temperatures. Grandma Sands warns the children to stay away from Collier’s Landing on their trip to get water for the house, something about a whirlpool catching a boy up in the water and taking him under. Byron: (By) Kenny’s older brother who often takes on the title of head teaser and bully. At the beginning of this chapter, the Watsons have already been back in Flint for several weeks. When Momma catches him she tries her best to make good on her promise but little Joey won’t let it happen. Copyright © 2020 Bright Hub Education. The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis/Amy Griffin. PLAY. The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 essays are academic essays for citation. It doesn’t take long for Kenny to realize how badly he messed up with Rufus. 0. His odd disappearances have them unsure of how to handle treating him after what happened, wondering what he actually saw and if he was really at the church after the bombing. Mr. Robert: Grandma Sands’ dearest friend after Grandpa passed away. Once he was on land again, Byron let loose a ton of emotion after seeing his brother nearly dying and having to save his young life. Comedy ensues for the start of the trip as Dad cuts up southern style once again and Byron goes back on his promise to hurt Momma and Dad real good with the good ole silent treatment. It includes a detailed Plot Summary, Chapter Summaries & Analysis, Character Descriptions, Objects/Places, Themes, Styles, Quotes, and Topics for Discussion on The Watsons Go to Birmingham--1963. That night the Watsons Head back to Flint with Momma and Dad worried sick about Kenny. All Rights Reserved. Each one of them seemed to have lost their charm. Find out what happens in our Chapter 1 summary for The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis. Kenny says he gets teased because there are two things wrong with him: the first issue is that he is extremely smart, so all the teachers love him and treat him differently. The boys go outside to scrape ice off the car windows, and Byron begins to mess with Kenny, telling his younger brother that he is going to teach him how to survive a blizzard. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis. Kenny is the only one to approach the bombed building. That didn’t stop him because a little later Kenny hears him playing with them in the bathroom. About The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963, The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 Summary, Read the Study Guide for The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963…, Marxist Criticism of The Watsons Go to Birmingham--1963, View Wikipedia Entries for The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963…. The Watsons Go to Birmingham-1963 - Chapter 8, The Ultra-Glide! Summary. Kenny shares with readers that his brother has given him a some good advice on cutting down on the bullying and teasing. She falls victim to Byron’s pranks as well but mostly because she is the youngest and isn’t aware of his trickery. When Byron is told that he should request that the food be put on charge he flies off the handle thinking they are on welfare. Naturally, she does not approve of the cold. Kenny finds himself more confused by his brothers teasing, meanness, and sensitivity. The discussion ends, and the Watsons start up their old car (which they call the Brown Bomber) so that they can travel to their Aunt Cydney's house and spend the night in a warmer place. The community sprints to the wreckage to find their children. Instead of rebelling, he’s falling in love with the place and Kenny can’t wait to get away, if only the heat wouldn’t keep putting him to sleep he’d be packed and waiting. Kenny takes the rare opportunity to tease By as he waits for Dad to get home only Joey spoils the turned tables torment by being extra sensitive to By’s feelings. Kenny is a star student, while Byron has apparently flunked two grades. About The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963, The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963 Summary, Read the Study Guide for The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963…, Marxist Criticism of The Watsons Go to Birmingham--1963, View Wikipedia Entries for The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963…. 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