Amber Brown Wants Extra Credit Extension Activities
- Grades: 3–5
About this book
Amber Brown Wants Extra Credit
Amber Brown gives her Mom special certificates for her birthday that will grant her wishes (within reason). Unfortunately, no one is giving any to Amber herself--and she needs them! With truth-or-dare questions she doesn't want to answer, unfinished homework assignments piling up around her ears, and a boyfriend of her mother's who she definitely doesn't want to meet, Amber's life right now feels full of too many unpleasant challenges. No matter what she does, it isn't enough. But when she finally meets the dreaded Max, she discovers that maybe he isn't so horrible after all, and maybe, just maybe, she can start granting her own wishes.
What Will Happen Next?
As you read aloud with students, ask them to guess what is going to happen next and why. Have them write down their thoughts. Then, get your students to share their different imaginings of what is going to happen with the rest of the class.
A quote from Chapter 5 works well for this exercise:
She stares at me. "Do it now. You have all day to finish it...and you know it better be done well. Max won't be here until around six o'clock. That gives you a lot of time. Now, Amber, you promised that you'd meet Max. I'll even use up two Amberino Certificates on this."
I stand up.
I know it's no use to argue.
And I started having such a nice Sunday.
And then she ruined it.
Well, just wait till she sees what I'm going to do hers.
Amber learns that life is always filled with challengesthings she doesn't want to do and changes she doesn't want to face up to. Have students make a list of all the things they are supposed to be doing but are avoiding. Some of those things will be practical, such as cleaning their rooms, finishing book reports, returning library books. Others will be more personal, such as apologizing to siblings or friends. You might want to divide students into small groups or pairs to work on their lists together. Then, have students share their lists. Help students accomplish their challenges by having them set a date by when they will have accomplished at least one goal. Create a wall chart to monitor students' progress. Celebrate each time a student accomplishes a goal.
One of Amber's class projects is to create a how-to guide. Challenge your class to create their own "how-to" guide following Mrs. Holt's assignment.
Be prepared to give directions to the class. Be logical. Be concise. You may show how to build, make, or do something (for example, you may show how to build a fort, make a dress, do karate, play an instrument). Your directions must be clear. In addition to giving directions, create something original concerning what you are explaining (e.g., making a poster, a film, or a computer program). Your presentation can take between five and fifteen minutes.
Remind students that the challenge of creating a how-to guide is to include every step of the process. It requires students to prioritize and organize the information and to take their audience's needs into consideration.
Amber makes Amber Brown-ies for her how-to project. Make Amber Brown-ies in your classroom. It's a great way to have scrumptious fun and help your students sharpen their skills in following directions, measuring, and understanding fractions. Provide them with some of the "wild" ingredients Amber uses to make her brownies.
The situations in Amber's life are distracting her in school. She's falling behind in her studies, and she even gets detention. Encourage your students to help one another with their own life distractions. Set up a "Dear Amber" box in your classroom. Invite students to submit "Dear Amber" letters explaining something that is troubling, upsetting, or challenging them. Then, have students randomly select their classmates' letters from the box and respond to them with advice and suggestions.