Touching Spirit Bear Journal Prompts
Why is Cole interested in Circle Justice and how do you know??
Use pgs. 12 and 13 to find text support for your answer.
Now that Cole has burned his shelter and supplies, what do you predict that he will do? Why? What might happen because of his decision?
What did Garvey’s cake demonstration mean? What did the separate
ingredients represent; what did the final cake represent?
Cole drew the spear back, then hesitated to glance over his shoulder.
No one was watching. He could easily back away from the bear and
not a single human being on the planet would ever know. Cole
the spear so hard his knuckles hurt. A lifetime of hurt, a lifetime of
proving himself, a lifetime of anger controlled his muscles now.
The real reason why Cole attacks the Spirit Bear is found in the above quotation. Using the ideas in the quotation, what do YOU think makes Cole go after the bear? Be sure to explain your thinking in your journal. Remember to share how your thinking helps you to better understand the book.
After the beating Cole gives Peter, how do you feel about the beating the Spirit Bear gives Cole? Is it fair? Does the bear’s beating change Cole? Be sure to explain your thinking in your journal,
and use details from the text to support your answer. Remember to discuss how your thinking helps you to better understand the book.
At the beginning of the chapter, Cole lets the reader know what he thinks about
the baby birds. However, at the end, Cole thinks about the baby birds again,
and this time his feelings seem different. In your journal, describe Cole’s
thoughts about the baby birds at the beginning, and explain what you think the final line of Chapter 9 might mean. What could be responsible for such a change in Cole? Does your thinking helps you to better understand the book? How?
In the middle of Chapter 10, Cole makes a significant decision. Discuss in your journal the decision Cole makes. Predict how this decision will change Cole. Use details from the text to prove you answer. Will your prediction help you to better understand the book? Why?
Once Cole makes his decision, he has to do some sickening things. In your journal, make a list of survival steps Cole takes, and then put yourself in Cole’s position. Could you do what he did? Explain why you think you could or why you could not. How does comparing Cole’s behavior to yours help you understand him better?
As Cole lays on the stretcher waiting for the plane, he tosses the Spirit Bear’s white hairs into the water, and then he smiles. Do you think throwing out the fur really means Cole is letting go of something else? What might Cole be “releasing”? Write your idea in your journal; do not forget to use details from the text. End your journal entry with a line or two on how your thinking about Cole helps you to better understand the book.
This chapter is full of many surprising events; some of those surprises are more important than others. Decide on two events that seem the most significant, and write about them in your journal. It will be your job to prove why the two events you chose are the MOST important in the chapter.
Respond to this question in your journal: what do you think Peter’s lawyer really meant when she said, “Why don’t we just send him away to Disney World for a year”? Was she serious? If she wasn’t, why did she say it? End your journal entry with a short explanation on why it is
important to understand how and why Cole’s lawyer said what she did.
At the beginning of the chapter, the reader (you) is told that Cole had to sell his things in order to pay for his second stay on the island. Cole lists all of his possessions that were sold: dirt bike, snowmobile, bicycle, skis, and a helmet. In your journal, write about a time when you had to sacrifice something of yours; it could be one of your possessions, it could be your time, or it could be your reputation. If you haven’t ever had to give up something that was important to you, write about a time when you lost something that was really special to you. Do you think it helps you to better understand Cole when you can compare yourself to him?
Let’s just imagine there is a glass of cola on your kitchen counter, but the glass isn’t full. There’s saying compare to Edwin’s stick example? Explain, in your journal, how the sayings are alike or different, and discuss how it the “glass half empty” might help you better understand the “left end of the stick.”
Sometimes the author makes the reader feel as if Cole is changing and dealing with his anger, but other times, the reader may wonder. Is Cole really healing – physically AND emotionally? What
do you think? Share your opinion in your journal, and be sure to include evidence from the book that proves your opinion. Do you think you need to know whether Cole is changing or not? Why?
Explain how the ancestor rock represents Cole’s anger and his need to blame
someone for his troubles. When he kneels down and gives it a shove down the
hill, what is he symbolically shoving away? Does the “rock” help you understand and visualize the burden Cole has been carrying?
In this chapter, Cole really does seem different. What did you notice about his behavior? What things does Cole do to help the reader believe Cole might actually be changing? How do you feel about Cole now? Does thinking about whether you like or dislike Cole help you to understand the story better? Write answers to all of these questions in your journal.