Having students choose a favorite quote or scene from the book allows them to express which parts of the story resonated with them on a personal level. In this way, students are making a text-to-self connection that demonstrates their understanding of the characters and their development or the themes of the novel. Students can share their storyboards afterwards and have a short discussion about what the quotes mean to them.
Some students may end up choosing the same quote, but have different perspectives. This is always interesting for students to see and can open up a discussion as to how not everyone can read the same lines in the same way based on their own perspectives and personal experiences.
“Lots of them are coming up here because they can’t earn enough back home to live on. Many of them used to farm. They’re separated from their families for years.”
“Nothing is wrong, my heart. But you will never forget me, ever?”
“Sometimes when Tyler is looking up at the night sky, he thinks he sees his grandfather’s face.”
“But a home means being all together, so until you are back with us Mama, we will never feel at home, not in Carolina del Norte, not in Mexico, not here."
“But Tio Felipe shook his head. That viejita was not going to believe a Mexican. My uncle hadn’t meant to hurt my feelings, but it made me feel the same left-out feelings as when the children at school called me names."
"This country [was] built by people who gave up everything in search of a better life, not just for themselves but for their children. Their blood, sweat, and tears formed this great nation . . . We're all born human beings. But we have to earn that e at the end of human with our actions so we can truly call ourselves humane beings."
"That's no way to treat decent folks!"
"We are the ones we have been waiting for . . . You and me, Mari, it's up to us. We are the ones who are going to save this planet. So we've got to stay connected - through the stars above and the swallows and letters back and forth . . . Your friend forever, Tyler."
"Friendship knows no borders!"
"Maria, you deserve to stay in our country. It would be a better nation with you in it. Your friend forever, Tyler."
""It's 'La Golondrina,'" Mari explains . . . "You sing it when you are far away from your homeland and the people you love.""
(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)
Objective: Create a storyboard that identifies your favorite quote or scene in Return to Sender. Illustrate your quote and write what it means to you.
Requirements: Quote or Scene, Illustration, 1-2 sentences about what it means to you.
Grade Level 6-8
Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)
Type of Assignment IndividualCommon Core Standards
(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)