The book begins as Auggie prepares to enter middle school. Up until this point in his life, due to his medical condition, he has been home schooled. The book follows Auggie through the highs and lows of middle school including bullying and forging friendships.
Palacio captures, with compassion and humor, the consequences of mean choices on both the victim and the perpetrator of bullying. Her book also creates deep empathy for Auggie and demonstrates the impact of kindness in the face of our differences.
A movement to build a culture of kindness was started as a result of Wonder’s popularity. Random House Children’s Books and Palacio created the Choose Kind movement. The movement includes the Choose Kind pledge where individuals can submit their name and pledge to choose kindness. So far, over 55,000 people have signed the pledge.
The movement also includes the option for schools to be a part of the Certified Kind Classroom Challenge. Schools that sign up receive support and materials to help their kindness campaign be a success. You can check out if schools in your area have signed up by viewing the Certified Kind Challenge Map.
Palacio has provided several other books and companions to Wonder. They include:
Wonder was written from several points of view; however, Palacio did not offer the point of view of the story’s antagonist, Julian. This addition allows readers to see the bully’s perspective by hearing a response from Julian.
One of the key components in Wonder was English teacher, Mr. Browne’s, precepts or words to live by. This book includes 365 precepts as well as messages from the characters of Wonder. This inspirational book is a perfect companion for readers that love the original book.
Pluto is another companion to the novel that offers readers a view of Auggie’s life prior to entering middle school through the point of view of Christopher, Auggie’s oldest friend.
Shingaling offers another view of Auggie’s experience in Wonder but through the eyes of Charlotte. Charlotte was one of Auggie’s welcome buddies as he transitioned into middle school. This companion book offers a girl’s perspective of Auggie’s experience.
The Wonder Journal gives Wonder fans a place to record their thoughts and ideas about the book, kindness, and the journey of growing up. The journal includes quotes from the book that are sure to inspire fans to write.
YouTube Channel: Dede Dankelson
Featured image via Amazon
h/t Choose Kind