Tuesday, February 19, 2013

February Bookworms Meeting - Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage

This past Thursday we had our second meeting of the 4th & 5th grade book club - The BOOKWORMS - at our library. It went really well! Attendance was still a little low, but the girls that came had loved our activity and we had some awesome discussions about the book. 

For the February meeting, the kids chose to read THREE TIMES LUCKY. It is a action-packed Southern mystery with a very plucky narrator named Mo. There's murder, mayhem, a tornado, sass, and plenty of heart. 

Book Description:
Rising sixth grader Miss Moses LoBeau lives in the small town of Tupelo Landing, NC, where everyone's business is fair game and no secret is sacred. She washed ashore in a hurricane eleven years ago, and she's been making waves ever since. Although Mo hopes someday to find her "upstream mother," she's found a home with the Colonel--a café owner with a forgotten past of his own--and Miss Lana, the fabulous café hostess. She will protect those she loves with every bit of her strong will and tough attitude. So when a lawman comes to town asking about a murder, Mo and her best friend, Dale Earnhardt Johnson III, set out to uncover the truth in hopes of saving the only family Mo has ever known.

I loved this book, the girls loved the book, and what do you know?  Shortly after we picked it, it was announced as a Newbery Medal Honor book for 2012!!

To start the program, again we had a little trivia contest, with blowpops as the prize for most correct answers, and then I had a list of discussion questions that we talked about. Here are a couple quick examples:

*What really makes up a family?

*How did living in a small town affect Mo's life?

*If you had a friend with an abusive parent (or other adult) in their life, what would you do?

Some of their answers were pretty insightful, and some parked excellent new discussions. I love hearing what their perspectives are on real life issues!

We finished up the meeting by making our own MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE. We used baby food jars and I printed out paper from the computer that had a parchment look.  I let the girls use the special edging scissors to make cool effects and then we wrote with fancy pens that look like paint.

This particular message is mine, but the girls decided to write messages that they were going to throw in the sea while they were on vacation. They used the library address as a place that someone finding the message could write back to...we'll have to see if they make any new pen pals. The girls loved it!!

All in all, a GREAT meeting!

Next month: One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt.


  1. I love the message in the bottle idea.. books that inspire me to do something in real life are amazing and fun!

  2. Are you willing to share other discussion questions you used?

    1. Sure!
      Here are the eight discussion questions we did:

      1. How did living in a small town affect Mo’s life?

      2. What do you think you would have done growing up without knowing who your parents were?

      3. Have you ever thought about starting your own business?

      4. If you had a friend who had an abusive parent (or other adult) in their life, what would you do?

      5. Do you have any celebrity idols like Miss Lana did?

      6. Would you ever “strongly borrow” something like Dale did Mr. Jesse’s boat?

      7. What really makes up a family?

      8. All of the characters in THREE TIMES LUCKY were very “quirky.” Who was your favorite?

  3. These are great activities! Important that if you are going to throw bottles in the ocean to NOT use plastic...there's a huge amount of plastic polluting the pacific ocean:

  4. I'm looking for some ideas to start a bookclub for some kids in my neighborhood. Thanks for the great ideas!