- Write a Character Simile Poem.
- Prepare a list of questions to determine whether or not someone has read this book carefully.
- Write a letter to the main character of the book asking questions, showing support, or making complaints about situations in the book.
- Find three examples of figurative language in the book, list them, and tell what kind of figurative language they are.
- Find five double-consonant words in the book.
- Alphabetize the words from your two favorite sentences in the book.
- Write a new title for your book and explain why this is your choice.
- What was the most exciting or interesting part of the book? Why?
- If you had enough money, what one object, thing, or place would you buy from the book and why?
- If you had written this book, what one part would you write differently? Why?
- Create a set of maps from your story. They can be 3-D, topographic, road maps, trail maps, or something else.
- Make a comic book version or an animated version (using Alice.com or stop-motion animation) of your book.
- Make a travel brochure for your book.
When I use these cards, I assign the students a particular number of cards. The 8th graders are reading Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell. I assigned them 2 Red cards, a green card, and a choice between a yellow and blue card. They shuffled through the decks and picked their cards. This takes some organization, and some pre-teaching, but watching them work on the different pieces, and hearing their conversations about the books is proof that learning is happening.
Projects from Island of the Blue Dolphins–a pastel of the cover of the book and a clay model of the boat the white men used:
Projects from Because of Winn Dixie–a small replica of the guitar Otis plays to calm the animals made from cardboard and duct tape, a cardboard and clay replica of the WInn-Dixie store and the scene where Winn-Dixie knocks over the fruit.