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Year 9 - How to build a house

Skapad 2016-08-19 13:51 i Södertälje Friskola AB Grundskolor
Grundskola 9 Engelska
In this novel by Dana Reinhardt we meet Harper. Her dad is getting a divorce from her beloved stepmother and even worse, Harper loses her stepsister at the same time. Harper decides to escape the situation by joining a volunteer program to build a house for a family who lost their home in a tornado. Can she learn to build her trust back for others?



Part 1 - Step One, Select the perfect site

Answer the questions:

  • What reasons does Harper give for going to Bailey?
  • Why is Harper so determined not to mix with the other volunteers?
  • Why do you think that Gabriel didn't show any interest in Harper until somebody else did?

Write (150 words): In the novel the main character, Harper, is a volunteer for an organization called "Homes from the heart". Working as a volunteer is an excellent way of doing good deeds and seeing the world at the same time. What do you know about volunteer work? Is it something you could imagine doing yourself? What kind of work could you do? In what parts of the world?

Part 2 - Steps Two and Three, Lay the Foundation, Put up the walls

Answer the questions:

  • How is Harper's life different to what it used to be before her dad and Jane broke up?
  • Why does Harper hold back when it comes to Teddy?
  • How does Harper feel about herself?
  • How would you describe the atmosphere between the volunteers?

Write (150 words): In the information material about "Homes from the heart", the group leader, Linus, has included a quote from Gandhi: You must BE the change you wish to see in the world. Think about that quote. What change would you like to see in the world? In what way would that change make the world a better place? What can you do in order to achieve that change? How can you BE the change?

Part 3 - Steps Four and Five, Insulate yourself, Windows and doors

Answer the questions:

  • How does Harper feel after her fight with Tess? Why?
  • How do you think Gabriel felt about Harper?
  • Do you think he and Tess wanted to hurt her?
  • How is Teddy different from Gabriel? Why does he tell Harper about his aunt Abigail?
  • "Dad is all I have", Harper claims in this part. Is she right?

Write: Pick out three quotes from the book! Give your reflections on each quote and discuss in writing what they make you think about - why are they meaningful to you/to your reading?

Part 4 - Steps Six and Seven, The roof, Final touches

Answer the questions:
  • Teddy wants Harper to tell him about Tess. Why does he ask her to do that, do you think?
  • How do Harper and Teddy deal with the fact that she is leaving in a few days?
  • Harper forgives Tess quite easily once Tess comes to Bailey. Why? Do you think Tess deserves to be forgiven?
  • Your own comment on the ending and the book as a whole?

Write (150 words): At their first meeting, Linus asks the volunteers what they have built in their lives so far. All things count: tree huts, lego towers, friendships, self-confidence, plans for the future etc. What have you built in your life? Please describe - it can be anything!



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