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Frindle by Andrew Clements

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Book Summary Novel Activities Vocabulary Words Writing Activities Discussion Topics Online Test

 

 

 

Book Summary

 

Nick Allen has always had plenty of ideas for stirring up action. He is known at school for being quite unique in this regard. One day in class, while attempting to help speed along class time in hopes of getting out of a lecture or homework, Nick is challenged by his stern teacher to learn about how words are created. Little did the teacher know what she was getting into.

Nick decided to test what he had learned by making up a new word. Nick decided to use the word frindle instead of pen. He worked hard to get everyone in town using it. He made local and then national headlines, and even appeared on television to discuss his new word. All the while, his teacher, the principal, and the superintendent were all against the big fuss and just wanted the situation to go away. Nick's devotion to pursuing his goal, his persistence, and his ability to inspire an entire community despite all the objections, make this wonderful book truly motivational and fun. An absolute worthwhile read.

 

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Novel Activities

 

1. It was really tough for Nick Allen to stay out of trouble. He had many problems to deal with once he created the word "frindle." However, there were also some benefits that came along with creating the new word. Think of all the positive and negative aspects of being Nick Allen. Create a list for each.

2. Imagine you have the means to invent your own product. Develop a product you think would be useful to society. Decide on a name, a use for the product, who might need or want the product (your target consumer), and why they would want to buy the product. How will you advertise the product?

3. Make up a new word for an everyday object. Share the word and definition.

 

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Vocabulary Words

 

thundercloud primly linoleum oath
rebellion overreaction prank masterminded
trademark ruckus consumers villain

 

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Writing Activities

 

Sensory/Descriptive: Pick five words from the dictionary that you've never heard of. Without reading the definition, create your own definition of what you think it could be based on the sound of the word. Draw a picture to accompany each. After you complete this assignment, go back and see if your definition matched or was close to the true meaning of the word. Note the similarities and differences.

 

Imaginative/Narrative: Fortunately, in the book, everything seemed to work out well in the end for Nick. But what if circumstances were different? What if he had been expelled from school? What if none of the other students supported him? What if his parents forced him to stop using his new word? Would the story have turned out differently? Most likely. Now, it is your turn to be the author. Write your own unique version of the ending to the story. Be creative! Try to come up with a new twist!

 

Analytical/Persuasive: Imagine you are Nick. Right before things get out of hand with using the word frindle, Mrs. Granger and the Principal agree to meet with you in front of a judge. This will be your opportunity to convince the judge that you should be able to use the word. Write a statement as if you were Nick. Remember, you must persuade the judge to take your side!

 

Practical/Informative: Imagine you are a newspaper reporter. Everyone is interested in the story of Nick Allen and the frindle. You decide to go undercover as an employee at the school and secretly observe everything that is happening and all the responses and comments by everyone involved. Write a newspaper article from the point of view of the reporter. Create some quotes from characters making sure they are appropriate for the character.

 

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Discussion/Journal Topics

 

Chapter Five: “All this work will mean so much more since you learned about it on your own.”

Chapter Eight: “Don’t you think this ‘frindle’ business has gone far enough? It’s just a disruption to the school, don’t you think?”

Chapter Twelve: “Well,” said Nick, “ the funny thing is, even though I invented it, it’s not my word anymore. Frindle belongs to everyone now,  and I guess everyone will figure out what happens together.”

 

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Online Test

 

Your students can take an online test with immediate results at:

Frindle Online Test

 

The Professional Development Institute has a complete literature unit for this novel. For more information, click the link below.

Frindle Literature Unit (Check out the sample pages!)

 

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