Monthly Archives: June 2011

Whooo Hooo!!! Another Friday, another blog!

Welcome to June.  Only a few more weeks left.  Whoo hoo!

I once again traipsed off to the library to find a book this week and got two good recommendations so I’m set for the rest of the year. Upon reading it I already found myself making lots of connections so I thought I’d challenge myself and finish some reading response connections.

First, Everyone MUST write a brief summary of their book.

Then, you will have a few options this week:

1.  You will have the choice of writing about a connection (that has to be REALLY detailed – at least 8 – 10 sentences)

2.  writing about 2 connections (that have 3-5 sentences EACH)

3.  finish 3 reading response sentence starters (each answer consists of 2-3 sentences).

(Please note that if you do the math–and you know how much I like math 🙂  –each option will be about the same length, it just depends on how whether you want to write a lot about one topic or little bits about a few topics).  Looking forward to seeing some great efforts!!

This week I read “mockingbird” by Kathryn Erskine.  (and nope, that’s not a mispelling, the title is purposely writtten in lower case odd eh?)

It’s a about an eleven year old girl Caitlin who has Asperger’s and whose brother has just died in a school shooting.  Asperger’s is a disease similar in some ways to autism but it totally varies from person to person.  Basically, Caitlin knows that her brother is gone and is able to communicate with people but sees most things in black and white rather than understanding all the details of life.

1.  I learned the most about Caitlin from her words.  The author uses this very effectively and reveals parts of what Caitlin is thinking (and showing that by writing all the conversations in italics).  This really helps us see things from Caitlin’s point of view.  For example when told she has to go out with the K-grade 2 kids for recess along with the regular recess time for grades 4-6, she says, “Two recesses? I don’t even  like one recess.”

2. I was embarrassed at first for Caitlin when she acted odd when there were lots of people at her house after her brother Devon’s funeral.  I guess she didn’t know any better and she wasn’t embarrassed so I probably shouldn’t be either–good lesson to learn.  Here is one example of what she did: she put her head under her Dad’s sweater and puts her head on his chest as he’s busy talking to people and is able to feel his chest rising up and down and smell his Gillette antiperspirant.   He let her stay there and pats her head through the sweater.  I was impressed that her dad just let her be herself and that he wasn’t embarrased.  And knew that by allowing Caitlin to do this, she’d feel safe and loved.

3.  I learned a lot about what living with Asperger’s can feel like for a person.  I’d heard of it before but haven’t experienced it personally.  I can now see how she has a difficult time with change which makes life super difficult since I think life changes all the time.  She wants Devon to come back, can’t understand why her dad is so sad and can’t do things the way he normally did (like ordering pizza on Thursday, just because that’s what they always did) and how when things feel like they’re out of control she ends up having a TRM (a Tantrum Rage Meltdown).  I have seen various children have those occasically over the course of my life but never really understood why they happened.  This makes much more sense and as with most things in my life, when I understand what’s going on, I feel more comfortable with a situation.

So there you have it, three finished sentence starters.  Have fun making your choice about what you’re going to write about and I can’t wait to read them.

Love Miss Esselink