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The Lemonade Ripple: A Sweet Story of Kindness and Charity



Last updated Thursday, December 12, 2013

Author: Paul Reichert
Date of Publication:
ISBN: 1616087013
Grade Level: 3rd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Dec. 2013

Synopsis: How one little girl’s act of kindness creates a ripple of generosity throughout her small town. When Caroline watches her disabled friend Shannon struggling with an old, rusty, squeaking, and wobbling wheelchair, she decides to use her grandmother’s secret recipe to make and sell lemonade to raise money for a brand-new wheelchair. When the neighborhood kids see Caroline trying to help, they choose to pitch in, too. Some kids look for spare change, while others start a carwash. Seeing the difference all the children make inspires Caroline’s grandmother to organize a sponsored paddle race down the river, which gets them enough money to buy Shannon the best new wheelchair available.

Note to readers:
•  The author Paul Reichert is also a cartoonist.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Have you ever had you had your own lemonade stand?
•  What do you think this book is about?
•  How do you make lemonade? What ingredients do you use?
•  Do you know anyone who has a lemon tree?
•  What other fruit can you use to make juice?

Vocabulary:
•  savored - Tasted or smelled something.
•  sunbeams - A ray of sunlight.
•  embarrassed - To cause to feel self-conscious or ill at ease.
•  shimmied - To vibrate or wobble abnormally.
•  launch - To throw or propel with force. To set going; initiate.
•  kayak - A lightweight canoe that is similar in design.
•  skiff - Any of various small boats propelled by oars, sail, or motor.

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Do you know anyone who uses a wheelchair?
•  What is a safe way to pick lemons from a tree?
•  How much money did Shannon's friends raise?
•  Who can explain a "ripple effect"?
•  What other ways could the community have raised money?
•  Can you think of other people or organizations that help others? (Perhaps mention the hurricane in the Philippines.)

Craft ideas:
•  Make a lemonade stand. (see sample and template)
•  Draw a boat you would use in a paddle race.

Special activities:
•  Make a list of ways to raise money to help someone.

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!