Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wonder by R. J. Palacio

A couple of months ago, I received this book in my school mailbox from Random House.  I had seen posters for it, but I hadn't bought a copy or read it.  I read it in a couple of days.  The main character has a birth defect that has caused him multiple surgeries.  In fifth grade he enters middle school, having been schooled at home up till now. 
Auggie's classmates don't quite know how to respond to his obvious differences.  The story is told from multiple perspectives.  The characters learn about courage, friendships and bullying.

I haven't decided yet if I will read it aloud to this year's class.  They are generally accepting of people with differences.  They had no problem filling our acts of kindness jar.  I don't have the issues with them that I have had other years.

On the other hand, I think they need to see the power of the bystanders in the world.  Bullies get more power when the group won't intervene.

Update June 2014: I did read this aloud to my students knowing that I would cry.  Here is a free printable form to analyze an event from multiple points of view.

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  1. What grade level? I read it to my 4th graders, and they loved it. They wanted another one like it and voted for Out of My Mind, which is a little similar. Sort of.

    1. I teach fourth grade also. I probably will read it this year to my class. I will have to try Out of My Mind also. Thank you for the suggestion.


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