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FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL: DOES CONFORMITY = ACCEPTANCE?
Earlier that day, our hero waits for his school bus...
Hi! I'm Julian! I am starting my first day at a new school. Do you like my new leather book bag? I am so proud of it! I can't wait to make new friends.
That morning, when Julian got on the bus, he noticed that no one wore a leather bag but him. The other kids all had backpacks. They did not seem to like the fact that this made him different. They made fun of him. Julian did not speak much. He kept quietly to himself.
OUR HERO NOW: Julian and the rest of his class learn that their last teacher of the day, Mrs. Olinski, is a paraplegic. That makes her different too! Julian feels relieved and not so alone.
Julian makes new friends in that class. He suddenly finds himself accepted - three students do not mind his leather book bag or his non-traditional ways. He immediately invites Noah Gershom, Ethan Potter, and Nadia Diamondstein to his house to tea after school, and he smiles with excitement when they all accept.
At the tea, Julian, Noah, Nadia, and Ethan decide to become a team. They choose a name for their group: the Souls. Julian believes that this name represents his friends' willingness to combine all of their differences and talents in a creative, sensitive way.
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