Study Guide

Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life Rules and Order

By James Patterson & Chris Tebbetts

Rules and Order

Rules were made to be broken. That's what Leo thinks when he and Rafe first see the Hills Village Middle School Code of Conduct. This thing is a whopping twenty-six pages long and filled with all kinds of restrictions on what students can and cannot do.

Rafe is basically questioning the whole reason this book exists. Does Hills Village really need all these rules? Aren't some of them kind of dumb? Do all 112 of these rules actually make this school a better place?

Nope. Not according to Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life.

Questions About Rules and Order

  1. Do you agree with Rafe that the older you get the more rules you have to follow? Or do kids have the most rules to obey?
  2. How do you feel about Rafe's No-Hurt Rule? Is it kind of ironic that he's made up a rule in a rule-breaking game?
  3. Operation R.A.F.E. stands for Rules Aren't For Everyone, but what exactly does Rafe mean by this? Should no one follow rules? Is he the only one who doesn't have to follow rules? Or are just some rules questionable?

Chew on This

Rafe and Jeanne have totally opposite views on rules—while Rafe questions the need for any rules, Jeanne just blindly follows all of them. A middle ground approach would probably be the best solution.

Breaking the rules is fun for Rafe, but that doesn't mean he's not orderly when he does it. Rafe's got his whole system written down with points and rules and structure and everything. You might even say his rule-breaking has rules.

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