Copyright Date: 2015
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Lexile Level: 580
Grade Level Recommendation: 5th-7th Grade
Common Core State Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.2
Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text, including how characters in a story or drama respond to challenges or how the speaker in a poem reflects upon a topic; summarize the text.
Suggested Delivery: Independent
- clubfoot: a condition where a person has a deformed or distorted foot.
- humiliated: to cause (a person) a painful loss of pride, self-respect, or dignity; mortify.
- ashamed: feeling shame; distress or embarrassed by feelings of guilt, foolishness, or disgrace.
- curmudgeon: a bad-tempered, difficult person
- keen: extremely sensitive or responsive
- resilient: springing back, rebounding
- Anticipation Guide: After the following statements write agree or disagree.
- Ada and her brother have a special bond because of the way they are raised. (Agree)
- World War II caused families to separate in order to keep them safe. (Agree)
- Clubfoot is something that cannot be fixed. (Disagree)
- All of the children who were being sent away were excited to leave their home. (Disagree)
- Ada and Jamie learned some valuable lesson when they were living with Susan. (Agree)
- Before: Ask students to tell you everything they know about World War II. This could be a great brainstorming activity for the whole class or for small groups. If needed, lead the students by asking questions.
- Who was involved?
- What caused the War?
- When did the war take place? Start? End?
- Where did the war take place?
- Why were people fighting?
- During: Have the students reflect on some questions and then have them share with either the whole class or a small group.
- What is Ada and Jamie’s relationship like? How does their relationship compare to the one(s) you have with your siblings?
- If you were in Ada and Jamie’s place, would you run away from home? Why or why not?
- How would you feel if you were a child on the train? What emotions would you be experiencing?
- Would you be brave enough to try something like riding a horse? If you fell off the horse would you get back on? What would be something you would want to try that your afraid of?
- After: What are some of the main themes of the story? Provide specific examples from the text to back up your ideas.
Writing Activity Suggestion: Throughout the story, Ada struggles with her self-worth. Have the students write about something they struggle with. Other questions that you could ask them:
- Has anyone told you that you couldn’t do something? How did that make you feel?
- What do you do to relax or make yourself feel better after a long day?
- Who is someone who makes you feel better when you are scared or frustrated? What do they do to help you?
- What is one positive quality or skill that you possess?
Lesson Plan Ideas and Helpful Websites:
- An Educators Guide to The War that Saved My Life
- Clubfoot – Ada, the main character, has clubfoot. This plays a big part of her story.
- Publisher’s Website– Find out more about the book!