So if you haven’t read Wonder by R.J. Palacio yet, you need to get up on it! Appropriate for grades 4 and up, this touching story is about a boy with a facial deformity who struggles at his new school, after being home schooled for most of his life. It deals with themes such as friendship, loyalty, bullying, and kindness. I got this idea for my bulletin board from a blog called “Teaching in Room 6” http://teachinginroom6.blogspot.com/2015/05/wonder-wall-of-precepts.html. Instead of a postcard to the teacher, I had the kids write a letter to the author. Click here to download my instructions: Wonder – Letter to the Author. Here’s a rubric: Wonder – Letter to the Author Assessment.
First, I had the kids pick a precept (rules to live by) that really spoke to them. I had them interview 3 adults and ask them what they thought the precept meant. Then they drew a self-portrait in the style of the cover art, along with their precept below it.
After that, they wrote a 5-paragraph letter to the author, where they shared their precept and what it meant. In addition, they told the author what they thought the theme of the book was and justified it with examples from the book.
I kept the kids’ rough drafts on a whim, and I’m glad I did! I knew the kids needed some practice on the computer, so I had them type up the letter, insert a picture of themselves, and print it out. In the new era of computerized testing, these skills are absolutely essential! I plan on sending the typed letters to the author later this month.
The kids absolutely loved this book and they enjoyed the project, too!
Here’s one of my favorites! We’d been working on idioms, and I think this young lady got “blow my top” and “knock my socks off” mixed up! 🙂