Because of Winn-Dixie

 

Because of Winn-Dixie             Scholastic ©2000
Kate DiCamillo                               182 pages


Summary: Because of Winn-Dixie, India Opal Buloni, the preacher's daughter, makes new friends in a new place. She begins to understand that her mother is not coming back, and the relationship with her father grows. The summer Opal found Winn-Dixie was the summer they moved to Naomi, Florida.

Character Descriptions:

India Opal Buloni, but her father calls her Opal, is ten years old and has just moved to Naomi, Florida. She is the daughter of the preacher at the Open Arms Baptist Church.

The preacher is Opal's father and the new minister at Open Arms Baptist Church.

Personal Reflection: This novel is a great choice for reluctant readers because of the small page size and large words. For animal lovers, Because of Winn-Dixie is perfect. Much like middle school learners today, Opal faces many changes and challenges throughout this novel, so young readers will be able to identify with the character.

Subject/Theme:
     Realistic Fiction

Topics:
     Animal Stories
     Friends and Friendship
     Understanding Self and Others

Related Work:
     Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Discussion Questions:

1. How has Opal been affected by family changes throughout this novel? Be specific and justify your reasoning.

2. Compare and contrast Opal and Winn-Dixie. Name examples from the book and explain your reasoning.