Saturday, February 25, 2012

Love, Stargirl

A Sequel in Letters

Stargirl is back, in a different state, and is being homeschooled again. After everything that happened to her in Jerry Spinelli's Stargirl, she can't imagine going back to a real school again, so instead she studies "the essence of nothingness" and writes poems while on "field trips." Her heart is still broken after what Leo did to her but she writes him letters about her experiences that she is not sure she will ever send. Stargirl's letters tell of her new friends Dootsie and Betty Lou. She shares her feelings for Perry and her desperate attempts to help Alvina, a headstrong preteen. Stargirl's journey in this story is about trying to find the happiness she had when she was back in Arizona with Leo. A fantastic sequel that only makes you love the free-spirit that is Stargirl a little bit more than you did after reading Stargirl. Find my blog on Stargirl here.

Reading Level: Flesch-Kincaid 3.0 (Interest level is at a higher grade level)

Teachers: Here are some resources and ideas...

Web Resources:
  • Discussion Questions: This site offers a variety of discussion questions as well as writing activities and "beyond the book" ideas such as staring a "Stargirl Society."
  • Reader's Guide: From randomhouse publisher, a Reader's Guide of discussion and comprehension questions is available here.
  • Sample Unit Plan: Here you can find samplings from a Love, Stargirl unit. There are comprehension questions, poetry connections and many possibilities to help get you thinking when creating your own plan of study with Love, Stargirl. You can also purchase the entire unit plan.

Vocabulary:  To preteach or talk about: stucco, bungalow, vacant, parenthetical, agoraphobic, valiantly, hijacked, meddling, pip, quaint, smitten, oratorical, vintage, nun-chucks, ovation, drab, solstice, daunting, flattery, befuddled, reverence.

Before Reading: What do you remember about Stargirl? Have you ever written a letter you weren't sure if you would send? Write a letter to someone that you probably would never send to them.

During Reading: Follow one part of Stargirl's letter and create some type of representation of the story just focusing on that one aspect. You could create a flow chart, a pictorial representation, a story board, etc. Examples: follow Stargirl's happy pebble wagon, follow Stargirl's feelings towards Leo or Perry, follow the events in Margie's doughnut shop.

After Reading: Stargirl decides at the end of her letters to send them all to Leo. Would you have made the same decision? Do you think her decision will change anything that has happened between Stargirl and Leo?

Spinelli, J. (2007). Love, Stargirl. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. 

Happy Reading (&Running) =) 

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