Questions about Content:

1. What topics does JQA believe an eleven-year-old shouldn't be expected to write about? What purpose does he believe his early writings will serve?

2. What is taking place in JQA's life when he receives his first diary? Why is he unable to write in his journal for several days while on board the Sensible?

Questions for Drawing Historical Connections:

3. Who built the Palace of Versailles? What is its historical importance?

Questions for Thought, Discussion, and Writing:

4. John Adams not only encourages his son to begin a diary but also reminds him to continue it. In a letter written on May 14, 1783, the older Adams asks, "Have you kept a regular Journal?" He goes on, "We think, and improve our Judgments, by committing our Thoughts to Paper." Do you agree with John Adams? Explain.

5. What subjects does JQA write about in his entry of August 12, 1780? Why does he consider them worth mentioning?

6. JQA argues that a diary will help him recall his travels through Europe. Has the invention of photography and videography replaced journal writing in helping to preserve important moments in one's life? Why or why not?