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Soar by Joan Bauer

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Soar is a story of a boy with the heart of an eagle who never gives up. You will find his positive attitude, love of baseball, coaching, and teamwork contagious. You will cheer as he makes friends, cares for others, and applies the knowledge he has learned from Walt, books, and life to help him overcome the struggles ahead of him and strengthen hearts around him.

As a baby, Jeremiah was abandoned in the snack room of Walt Lopper's computer business. In his little hand he held an eagle stuffie, his mother's only gift, one that would define his character as he grew. Eagles have strong hearts, good eyesight, and are fierce fighters, you know. If she had wished for Walt to adopt Jeremiah, she got her wish. Walt had never even been married, but he knew by the determination in the little guy's eyes that there was power and genius inside him. Walt adopted Jeremiah, and they became a team.

Would Walt be a good father for Jeremiah? 
Would a good father take his baby boy to baseball games?
Would he tell his little son how a batter could psych out the pitcher with the look in his eye?
Would he read coaching books and stories about baseball heroes to Jeremiah?
Would he talk baseball strategies with Jeremiah?

Would Walt show Jeremiah how to build robots?
Would Walt encourage Jeremiah to love baseball and robots?

Of course. They were a team.

Walt was all those things to Jeremiah. He built robots with Jeremiah. He coached him and cheered for him as he began to play baseball in first and second grades. Jeremiah's goal was to become a professional baseball player.

And, then, when Jeremiah began to have trouble running, Walt was there to try to support him and look for doctors who could diagnose his problem. As Jeremiah got weaker, the problem was pinpointed by a cardiolgist. A virus had attacked Jeremiah's heart muscle. It was dying.

What could the two baseball fanatics do? Walt pointed out the ways that Jeremiah was a winner in his resolve, positive attitude, courage, love of baseball, and genius abilities. Jeremiah's character grew stronger, even as his heart continued to weaken. Walt assured Jeremiah that they would overcome the obstacles ahead of them.

The doctors said he would need a heart transplant.

Jeremiah hoped that a heart transplant would make him strong enough to play baseball again. For 18 long months, they waited for a heart to become available. Would he be able to hold on long enough for him to realize his goal, become a professional baseball player, to soar?

Was Jeremiah's heart transplant successful? Would he be strong enough to pursue his goal? Or would he have to change direction and tweak his goal? Would the picture of an eagle flying through a storm continue to inspire him? Is it possible that Jeremiah, the middle school boy with a heart transplant would be the one who could save the town whose heart was dying because of Performance Enhancing Drugs?

Would Jeremiah help share his knowledge of baseball with discouraged boys on his middle school team? Would he help a younger boy with Autism to discover his baseball genius? Of course. They were a team.

This Kids Wings Activity Guide Contains a culminating Jeopardy-type game plus 71 Pages of activities including:

Pre-reading Activities
Get Ready! Get Set! Discuss! Pre-reading Discussion Cards
Anticipation Guide
Preparing Your Intellectual Tools
Map Study: Where in the World Are Ohio and Missouri?
Walt and Jeremiah, A 3-page Readers’ Theater Introduction to Soar for 2 Voices
Character Studies
Chart the Story’s Progress
Vocabulary List by Chapters
Vocabulary Tic-Tac-Toe

7-Chapter Guides that Include:
Vocabulary List for 6 Chapters
Quick Writes for Each Chapter
Chapter Questions for Predicting and Confirming
Comprehension Check-ups
Visualizing the Text
Puzzles
30 Baseball Game Questions-and-Answers for each of 7 chapter groups

How to Play Classroom Baseball
Active Baseball Game Questions and Answers to Conclude Each Chapter Group

The Research Song for Defining Big6 Skills
Research Magellan
Research Autism
Research Performance Enhancing Drugs

Listening for the Point of View in a Story
The Meanings of Names
Plotting the Plot in Soar

PLUS a 53-slide interactive, projectable Jeopardy-type game!


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