Does your class usually include kids who are really into football at the start of the school year? Does it also usually include kids who think football is violent and a waste of time? In that case, you should definitely meet Crash and Penn.
Crash is a bullying middle school football star. Penn is an introverted transfer student. And another year of middle school is about to start. This is the situation in Jerry Spinelli’s novel, CRASH. It sounds like a sure recipe for disaster, but that’s what makes CRASH so fun to read, and perfect for the back-to-school season.
CRASH plays football and thinks Penn is the strangest kid he has ever met; Penn continues to do things in his own unconventional way. And somehow it all works out (just the way teachers hope it will with the mix of kids in each new year’s class).
After completing my CRASH novel study and a review game for the novel, I wrote a blog post about themes in CRASH. The blog post includes questions about various themes in the story that you can use in your classroom for reading responses or writing prompts.
I have also put together this little activity, Crash Coogan’s Yearbook, which you can download now for free in my Teachers Pay Teachers store. If you are thinking about teaching CRASH this year, check out some of these resources for yourself.