us your ideas!
courage, peer pressure, pigeons,
Palmer LaRue is not looking
forward to the day he turns 10. His
town has an annual Pigeon Day. When
a boy turns 10 in this town, they
become "wringers" and strangle the
pigeons wounded during the annual
pigeon shoot. He must either accept
this task or find the courage to say
no. His buddies soon discover Palmer
is hiding a pet pigeon in his room.
He finds friendship with Dorothy,
the girl across the street. Palmer
finds it is hard not to go along
with the crowd.
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- Author and Book
- Jerry Spinelli (1941- )
- Author Information
- Book Information
- Book Connection. Read Maniac Magee, the
Newbery Medal Book in 1991. Compare the main characters.
Read another pigeon book, Gay Neck.
- Writing Connection. When Palmer walked through
park, he remembered experiences from past pigeon days.
Are there places that you like or don't like to go
because they bring back certain memories? Palmer was
pressured to participate in Pigeon Days. What would you
do in his situation? Have you ever had to "take a stand?"
Discuss the problems of peer pressure.
- Student Project Connection. Explore the Pigeon
Inquiry project created by students and teachers with the
Miami Museum of Science.
- Global Connection. Join the Great Backyard
- Cool Classroom
- Pigeons. Learn more about the care of pigeons
as pets. Make a list of good and bad things about
pigeons. Look up information about pigeons and see how
many different breeds there are of racing pigeons. Create
a bulletin board showing the different breeds of
- Famous Pigeons. Read about the famous pigeon
called Cher Ami. Write a fictional story about one of his
missions during World War I.
- Problems with Pigeons. Pigeons and people do not always mix well. Learn about some of the problems that urban and rural areas have with pigeons. Many view them as a nuisance and as pests.
- Pigeon Days Debate. Hold a classroom debate
about the Pigeon Days festival. Should it be continued or
- Festivals. Many small towns hold festivals.
Does your town have a festival? If not, invent one. Pick
something unique or interesting in your town. Create a
speech discussing why you think your festival should be
chosen. As a class, vote on the best festival idea. Send
it to the local Chamber of Commerce.
- Bird Feeders. Create your own bird
- Birds. Parker loved his pigeon, but there are
many bird pets. Choose a bird pet and learn about its
care. Create a chart showing the anatomy of a bird.
Compare the body of the bird to a human. Learn more about
feathers and their importance to birds. How do birds fly?
Why don't people fly? What would it be like to have
feathers or wings?
- Created by Annette
Lamb, 10/99. Updated by Larry Johnson
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