Welcome back for the second week of the blogging portion of our CIS Parent Book Club! We loved following the discussion last week and look forward to more good conversation this week. The students are hanging on to every word of what is happening in Out of My Mind and are anxious to find out what happens with Melody and the Whiz Kids quiz team. Again, we encourage you to find time to bring these topics up with your children. Just make sure you don't give away any spoilers if their classes are behind you in the reading! Like last week, choose one, a few, or all of the questions to address in the comment section. Let's begin!
READ CHAPTERS 11-20
1. In chapter 11, Melody starts inclusion classes. We are also introduced to H-5's fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Shannon, the music teacher, Mrs. Lovelace, and to Molly and Claire, a couple of "mean girls". How is Mrs. Shannon different from some of the teachers Melody and her H-5 classmates had in earlier grades? What are your feelings about Molly and Claire? How does Mrs. Lovelace respond to some of the bullying that is going on? How is Melody responding to inclusion?
2. Melody is assigned a new aide, Catherine, in chapter 12. Describe Catherine. What are the positives and negatives of having Catherine by her side? We also meet Miss Gordon and Mr. Dimming. How does Melody feel about the two of them?
3. Chapter 13 is an important chapter. Melody desires a true friend in her life. How do you define a true friend? How important are friendships in our lives? Is Rose going to be a true friend?
4. Rose shows off a new laptop in chapter 14. What does Rose's laptop inspire in Melody?
5. Melody is thrilled with her new Medi-Talker. What must have it been like for her to be able to communicate more using this new device? Melody's dad videotapes her, and she's thrilled. Why do you think she's happy about him recording her "first words"? What would it have been like for Melody's parents when they heard her say, "I love you"?
6. In chapter 16, Claire is amazed that Melody "had thoughts in her head". Do we discount certain people as having less of a voice? What are the consequences of not valuing everyone's voice?
7. What do we find out about Mr. Dimming in chapter 17?
8. Melody wants Mrs. V to feel sorry for her in chapter 18. It would have been easy for Mrs. V to respond by sympathizing with Melody, but Mrs. V responds in a different way. What are your thoughts about her response? Is she too harsh on Melody? When is "tough love" appropriate?
9. The conversation at the bottom of page 170 between Mrs. V and Melody's mom reveals a lot about each of their attitudes toward Melody. Discuss what you think of their exchange. Sharon Draper ends many chapters in a bittersweet way. Just when something good happens to Melody, there is something sad that happens or that creeps into her mind. Why do you think Sharon Draper chooses to write the story in this way?
10. What are your hopes for Melody and the Whiz Kids quiz team?
Start the conversation! Be sure to reply to others' comments, also, to keep the discussions going. If there is something you wanted to discuss, but it wasn't in the questions, feel free to bring it up! We're looking forward to reading your thoughts...