• First, we’re having a GREAT time with the One School-One Book program…. Getting “thank you” notes from parents already about how it’s “forcing” some family reading time that they seemed to have lost over the years.
    — Paul Marinko - Principal at St. Paul's Lutheran School - Fort Wayne, IN
  • Since last spring, our entire school has excitedly embraced the One School, One Book Program. We will soon begin our spring selection: A Cricket in Times Square -- the third book we've adopted since the spring of 2010!

    We are so thrilled with the positive impact this program has had on our students, families, and staff
    — Laurie LaRue - First Grade Teacher at Edgewood School - Bristol, CT
  • I think the OSOB program is brilliant. My seven year-old attends Orleans Elementary in Massachusetts and they (we) are reading Masterpiece. Since the grades levels range from one to five at this school, finding a book to suit all is difficult. My daughter can follow the big picture somewhat but we have to reinforce what we’ve read because it’s a lot to take in for her.
    — Glenn Krzeminski - Parent of student at Orleans Elementary - Orleans, MA
  • The One District, One Book program promoted by Read To Them...is a powerful way to systemically address and promote a culture of literacy throughout the entire school system.

    My school actually adopted a hamster and even used it as “pet therapy” for many of the behaviorally challenged children in our school.
    — Kenny Moles of West Virginia

Because of Winn-Dixie

by Kate DiCamillo (1970)

Because of Winn-Dixie is the story of a lonely girl, Opal, just moved to Florida with her father, an itinerant preacher, who manages to make friends with an eccentric cast of characters via the charms of a stray dog. The book was a Newbery Honor Book and its author, Kate DiCamillo, has gone on to to win the Award with her subsequent work.

Because of Winn-Dixie is a favorite choice for One School, One Book because it is short (170 pp.) and very accessible – easy to read aloud, and easy to apprehend. (It is also particularly popular with girls.) DiCamillo writes clear prose and is a brisk story-teller. The charms come from her characters, each of whom bear their own brand of wisdom, shared by Opal and the reader alike.

Because of Winn-Dixie also offers the fine example of a mere trivia question bearing fruit long after the book has been read. Early in the book, Opal asks her father to tell her ten things about her (absent) mother. The preacher obliges with an intriguing list, bearing charms (she loved to run) and faults (she couldn’t cook). As an innovative trivia question, students have been asked to re-create the list of ten items about Opal’s mother – as a class. Teachers at participating schools have been so enamored of the list of Ten Things (there is another later in the book about the dog, Winn-Dixie), that they have created their own projects for Mother’s and Father’s Day – suggesting students write Ten Things about each of their parents.

Just a small, but charming example of the legacy that reading One Book as One School can yield.

There are nine supplementary resources for Kate DiCamillo’s Because of Winn-Dixie:

  • a sample letter home to parents
  • a 3-week reading schedule
  • a 4-week reading schedule
  • suggested assembly ideas
  • Daily Trivia Questions
  • Daily Trivia Answer Key
  • a Trivia Contest
  • Trivia Contest Answer Key
  • suggested activities

As a participating member of One School, One Book you may have access to all of these documents. Here are some samples:

The sample documents are incomplete. They are designed to give you a quick peek at the documents for each title. For the complete and full versions of all documents, you must be a participating Read to Them school. Contact bruce.coffey@readtothem.org for more information.

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