A Sound of Thunder CER

A Sound of Thunder CER


By: Yvonne

A person travels back in time and steps on a butterfly, from then on changing history. The big idea behind this story talks about the “Butterfly Effect,” which states that a very small event can have large unintended consequences. The exposition of this story shows that this story is set in 2055, where a company has created a way to travel back in time and is used to hunt dinosaurs. Eckels signs up for this event and meets his Safari guide, Mr. Travis. Throughout the story, Eckels is warned more than a few times to always stay on the path. They can’t afford to change any piece of history by stepping on a single leaf. This shows the big idea behind this story, which is that “Small actions can sometimes lead to big differences.”


In the story “A Sound of Thunder,” by Ray Bradbury, the author believes that “Small actions can sometimes lead to big differences.” Mr. Travis constantly reminds Eckels to stay on the path: “‘Stay on the Path. Don’t go off it. I repeat. Don’t go off. For any reason! If you fall off, there’s a penalty. And don’t shoot anything we don’t okay.’” (Bradbury 225) This quote shows the Words of the Wiser from Mr. Travis, the Safari Guide. Mr. Travis constantly reminds Eckels to stay on the path and emphasizes the fact that there is a penalty for falling off the path. This shows how important staying on the path is and indicates how serious it is to fall off the path. This shows the theme of this story, “Small actions can sometimes lead to big differences.” As the story continues, there are more pieces of evidence that show theme through Words of the Wiser. “‘Step on a mouse and you crush the Pyramids. Step on a mouse and you leave your print, like a Grand Canyon, across Eternity. Queen Elizabeth might never be born, Washington might not cross the Delaware, there might never be a United States at all. So be careful. Stay on the Path. Never step off!’” From this quote, it states the importance of any small thing going wrong back in history, stepping on a single mouse ruins the entire history of the family of that single mouse. This shows the big idea about how serious it is for any type of mistake when traveling in the past. How little changes can cause huge consequences. Further on in the story, Eckels panicked when seeing the Tyrannosaurus rex and stepped off the Path, therefore changing the direction of history from then on. Evidence from the story tells us how severe this action was, Mr. Travis says: “‘It’s his shoes! Look at them! He ran off the Path. That ruins us! We’ll forfeit! Thousands of dollars of insurance! We guarantee no one leaves the Path. He left it. Oh, the fool! I’ll have to report to the government. They might revoke our license to travel. Who knows what he’s done to Time, to History!’” (Bradbury 233) This piece of evidence shows how the small action that Eckels did made such a huge difference. By stepping off the path, Eckels changes the history and future of many people, animals, and nature. This shows the big idea about the theme that “Small actions sometimes lead to big differences. From these pieces of evidence, it is clear how the little actions Eckels made lead to big differences and consequences.

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