Monday, July 15, 2013

Book Club--Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Today was the first meeting of our four-week 6th and 7th grade summer book club. The first book was Wonder by R.J. Palacio, a book which I love deeply and truly. Still, I fretted about making it awesome--if kids thought week one was lame they wouldn't come back. And with only seven kids signed up, that's a lot of pressure to not wreck the bookclub.

It was awesome.

Unsurprisingly, all the kids declined to be in the shot.

So, you can't see it very well in the photo, but please note the rubber mallet sticking out of the box. This was an important piece of our successful hour.

It was a very shy group. Fortunately one of my life-skills is making shy people feel comfortable (through making a fool of myself, mostly), so no one wanted to leave after the hour was up!

We started by watching the book trailer, and giving general impressions of the book. Since they were not very talkative, I talked a little about precepts and kindness, and they shared which precept from the book they liked best. Then I had them write something kind on a piece of paper I had pre-cut into squares, and then we folded them into paper balloons. We also talked about pets while this was going on. It was a good kind of ice-breaker activity. We also listened to the Bowie song from the book while we were doing this.

Then I showed them the "Choose Kind" pledge and website, and we had a good discussion about the bullying in the book. I asked the question, "What was the worst instance of bullying in the book?" and one of the girls said that for Auggie they were all the same--so insightful! Then I introduced our final activity, which is where the rubber mallet came in. I talked about a personal instance of bullying I experienced as a kid, and we talked about how we have ALL been bullied or at the very least witnesses bullying. So I had them think of a time they'd felt or witnessed bullying, then write one or two words that represented that story on a strip of paper. Next we put the strips into the cardboard tubes and SMASHED them.

It was great!

1 comment:

  1. Great job! Love the dramatic ending, (to your book club), Miss Anna! ~ jane


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