Saturday, September 15, 2012

Wonder by R.J. Palacio with updates

After reading all summer about the Wonder of Wonder on Twitter, I finally got around to ordering it. I started it this morning and finished it this afternoon, it was that brilliant!
To any of my teacher friends reading this blog- you need to pick this book up RIGHT NOW! I would love to know what kids think of this book, I think it has potential as an amazing reading aloud- there are so many wonderful stopping points and places you could have really really deep discussions about many important topics and concepts throughout this novel. Wonder is the story of how August, a 10 year old boy with a severe facial deformity learns to deal with the harsh reality of middle school. But, it is also about how his peers, friends and family learn to deal with getting to know who someone really is outside of their appearances. This is Palacio's first novel and she has hit a homerun with it. Wonder is told mostly from August's perspective, but there are times when you hear from his sister, and a few of the other kids at school. It is really interesting to read how they all deal with his appearance and the pressure they feel by knowing him and even befriending him. This book teaches empathy, kindness and how to stand up for what you believe in. I just checked out Palacio's website and I really like the questions she has posted for discussion. This is an incredibly powerful story, I know August will live with me for a very long time. UPDATE- January Many classes have been reading and discussing Wonder. A friend of mine read it aloud to her class and then had her students create a blogpost about the book. She shared one amazing post with me, and I had to share it here. You can check out Mackenzie's thoughts about the book But you also need to see the Wonder video the class made- you can see that below.

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