BookKids: On Squirrel Poetry & Taking Action

BookPeople is proud to host a book club for kids ages 8-12 along with local volunteer group Austin Allies. We meet every third Saturday of the month at 12:30 PM. Today we’re giving you an inside look at our last meeting, where we discussed Flora and Ulysses by Newbery medalist Kate DiCamillo!


What do squirrels smell like? Can you hope and observe at the same time? If you were a superhero, how would you get your powers? At our most recent book club meeting, we discussed these questions and many more after reading Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo!

The club is led by Austin Allies and BookKids, with the goal of building empathy through reading. In the past we’ve read books like Wishtree by Katherine Applegate and My Life With the Chimpanzees by Jane Goodall. Every once in a while, we also attend BookPeople events together, so we can meet awesome authors and ask them questions about their books.

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Flora and Ulysses is about a girl named Flora, a self-described cynic, and her friend Ulysses, a super-powered squirrel. The novel is quirky and cute, sprinkled with full-page illustrations and comic-style graphic sequences that make it entertaining for readers of all levels!

Book club members started off the meeting talking about the plot of Flora and Ulysses, as well as favorite characters and funny scenes. We discussed cynicism and if Flora really is a cynic, eventually coming to the conclusion that she isn’t.

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Book Club members refreshing themselves on the plot of Flora and Ulysses

When we talked about the definition of a cynic and the balance between belief and science, Lucas said:

“Don’t just hope, instead take action!”

Why is it important to take action? We listed all of the people who Flora helped throughout the story and how that impacted them. For example, she saves Ulysses from the vacuum cleaner that gave him his powers and helps her dad vanquish his loneliness! She even helps her mother realize that she loves and accepts Flora, even if she isn’t ‘normal’.

At the end of the meeting, each member of book club got to create squirrel poetry or comics, with topics ranging from cats vs dogs to people being sucked down toilets.

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If you were a super hero, how would you get your powers?

If you know a kid who loves reading and wants to make new book friends– or if YOU’RE that kid– please come join us at Kids Book Club! We meet every third Saturday of the month at 12:30 in the Kids amphitheater. All kids ages 8-12 are welcome.

-Addie M. 

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