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Last updated Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Author: Katherine Applegate
Date of Publication: 2017
ISBN: 1250043220
Grade Level: 4th    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Dec. 2018

Synopsis: "Warm and thoughtful, this story is told from the perspective of an ancient oak tree who has seen it all. Bestselling author Katherine Applegate gets readers rooting for the old tree, along with the people and animals who come to depend on it. The shorter length and strong plot are appealing for middle grade readers who are growing into novels with less illustrated narrative and more complex subject matter." - Seira Wilson, Amazon Editor

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Have you ever seen a tree like the one on the cover?
•  How many types of trees can you name?
•  What kinds of wishes do you think the tree grants?


•  Aspirations - something that a person wants very much to achieve
•  Bestowed - to give something as a gift or honor
•  Pessimistic - expecting bad things to happen
•  Optimistic - expecting good things to happen; hopeful
•  Ascents - the act or process of rising, moving, or climbing up

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  What are things you can do with a tree (ex. climb, get shade, put a tree house)?
•  Do you think that tree can talk?
•  What would you wish for?
•  What kinds of animals live in a tree?

Craft ideas:
•  Make a wishtree. Have kids draw the trunk and branches of a tree on construction paper. Have kids cut out leaves from construction paper, write wishes on them, and glue them to their tree.
•  Make a holiday card for one of your family members.
•  Check our craft ideas on Pinterest!

*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!