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Riley Mack and the Other Known Troublemakers
Study Guide
Prepared by Jen Kleinknecht, Media Specialist, H.B. Whitehorne Middle School, Verona, NJ

Comprehension
Vocabulary Words
Discussion Questions
Activities

 Downloadable version of The Riley Mack Study Guide (PDF)

 
COMPREHENSION QUESTIONS
Chapters 1-5
  1. Why won't Riley steal the answer key to the final? Does his answer make sense to you?
  2. Describe Riley, Mongo, Jake, and Brianna.
  3. How do Riley and his friend convince Gavin to leave Jamal alone? Is their plan clever? Explain.
  4. What kind of trouble did Riley get in when his dad left?
  5. Where is Riley's dad?

Chapters 6-10
  1. Describe Jenny Grabowski.
  2. Describe the old lady whom Jenny helps at the pet supply store. What do you think of the old lady?
  3. Who was Winston Churchill?
  4. . Why does Chief Brown bring Riley to the police station?
  5. What does Chuck Weitzel do with the $2,000 from Mrs. Rollison? Why did he take over Mrs. Mack's window?
  6. Should Riley help the fifth graders? Explain.
  7. Do you think Chip will get caught? Why or why not?

Chapter 11-15
  1. What happened to Mongo's dog?
  2. How does Emma explain what happened to the dog? What do you think happened?
  3. What is for sale at Grandma's Antiques?
  4. Who is Grandma of Grandma's Antiques?
  5. What is the plan to catch the dognapper?
  6. What do Riley and his friends discover about Gavin and his grandma?
  7. What are the Buck-Eyed Bandits planning to do to Mr. Weitzel's bank?
  8. Do you think that Mr. Weitzel deserves what the Bandits are planning? Why or why not?

Chapters 16-20
  1. How do Riley and his friends help Amigo and Pepe at the pet supply store?
  2. Based on what you learned in chapter 17, what do you think of Chief John Brown?
  3. In Chapter 17, what pictures does Chief John Brown have?
  4. How are Riley and his friends going to trick Gavin into giving back Mongo's dog?

Chapters 21-25
  1. Do you believe that Gavin didn't steal the dog? Why or why not?
  2. Why do Riley and his friends suspect that Nick is the "dognapper"?
  3. What are Nick, Chief Brown, and Chief Brown's mother planning to do with Noodle? Do you think that their plan will work? Why or why not?
  4. Why did Emma say that a Martian stole her dog?
  5. Why did Riley put his cellphone under the truck for Grandma's Antiques?
  6. Do you think it's wrong for Riley and his friends to lie to their parents in Chapter 24? Explain.
  7. Why did Riley become Briana's friend?
  8. What is a puppy mill?
  9. How does Riley plan to rescue Noodle in Chapter 25?

Chapters 26-30
  1. What happens to Chip in Atlantic City?
  2. What happens to Grandma in Chapter 24?
  3. How does Gavin plan to get the Golden Doodle?
  4. How does Grandma plan to replace the Golden Doodle?
  5. Should Riley rescue the dogs, or is it too dangerous? Is it right to trespass and steal property to help the dogs?
  6. What does Mrs. Weitzel do to Mrs. Rollison? Do you think that she will catch him? Why or why not?

Chapters 31-35
  1. What does Brianna tell Nick about her cousin Beulah?
  2. Who is the beef for in Chapter 31?
  3. In Chapter 31, why is Riley nervous? Would you be?
  4. How do Riley and his friends distract Grandma?
  5. What does Gavin do to the new Golden Doodle?

Chapters 36-40
  1. How do Riley and his friends get the dogs in the truck?
  2. Do you think Riley's operation was a success? Why or why not?
  3. What is Riley's new plan in chapter 37?
  4. How does Jake distract Chief Brown in Chapter 37?
  5. What happens to Riley's mom in chapter 38? Were you surprised?

Chapters 41-45
  1. How does Riley get the access code to the bank?
  2. How does Briana trick Ms. Juzwik into giving her a tour? Why?
  3. Why is the news story on Grandma's puppy mill so important?
  4. What is Riley's plan to clear his mom's name?
  5. Whom does Riley discover in the bank?

Chapters 46-50
  1. Do you think Riley's plan in Chapter 47 will work? Is there anything else that he could have done?
  2. What do you think would have happened to Riley if the dogs were not released in time?
  3. Who arrives at the bank to help Riley?
  4. What happens to all of the dogs?
  5. What happens to Riley's mom?
  6. How does Grandma get arrested?
 
VOCABULARY WORDS
  1. rage
  2. scampered
  3. stilted
  4. incorrigible
  5. insulated
  6. perilous
  7. beguilement
  8. jaunty
  9. elucidation
  10. dexterous
  11. frantically
  12. lucrative
  13. symposium
  14. extricate
  15. rendezvous
  16. quota
  17. wallowing
  18. gallivanting
  19. reconvening
  20. impulsive
  21. improvisational
  22. enunciating
  23. aligned
  24. intermittent
  25. fetid
  26. distress
  27. measly
  28. wiry
  29. stealthily
  30. intent
  31. diversionary
  32. surveillance
  33. kismet
  34. concur
  35. disdainfully
  36. verification
  37. contemplating
  38. corral
  39. altruistic
  40. heinous
  41. detestable
  42. sinister
  43. anagram
  44. ambled
  45. deterrent
  46. nyctoagoraphobia
  47. vigilant
  48. caper
  49. surliness
  50. revitalized
  51. vacate
  52. volition
  53. maliciously
  54. imposition
  55. emaciated
  56. schematic
  57. canted
  58. egregious
  59. illuminated
  60. prestigious
 
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
  1. What do you think Riley's dad means when he says, "Fear gives a small thing a big shadow?"
  2. At the end of chapter 45, Riley says, " Never run away from danger, my friend. If you do, you double that danger. Do you agree or disagree? Explain.
  3. Do you agree with Riley that bullies are cowards? Explain.
  4. One of Riley's mottoes is to never let his anger show. Do you agree or disagree with Riley? Explain.
  5. On page 305, it says that Riley plans to protect his family, protect his friends, and defend those who could not defend themselves. How can you protect your family, friends, and others?
  6. Is Riley a good role model? Why or why not?
 
SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES
  1. The author has said that the characters in the book are modern-day versions of the characters from the legend of Robin Hood. Visit a website like the World Wide Robin Hood Society at www.robinhood.ltd.uk and click on "The Robin Hood Legend" and "Key Characters." How is Riley like Robin Hood? What other characters in the book are based on characters in the legend of Robin Hood?
  2. Research puppy mills and the laws against them. Write an editorial for your school newspaper speaking out against puppy mills.
  3. Riley and his friends have fun with anagrams. Try your luck with Anagram Scramble, the free online game for kids at www.booksandgames.com.
  4. Write a story starring you and your friends as heros.

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