Wonder

Wonder

by

R. J. Palacio

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Wonder can help.
Summary
Analysis
August spends most of his classes with Jack. He's not sure if the teachers put them next to each other or if it's just coincidence, but they sit next to each other in all of their classes. Once, in the hallway, an eighth grader accidentally knocks into August, helps him up, and only then notices August's face. The eighth grader says, "woah," and then runs off with his friends. August and Jack laugh about it all the way to class.
The fact that August and Jack can laugh after this experience suggests that friendship can make bullying easier to deal with, given that at times when August has dealt with this sort of thing alone, this is far from his normal reaction.
Themes
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Status and Bullying Theme Icon
Later, as they read in their textbooks, Jack asks August if he wants to beat up kids like that eighth grader. He suggests that August get a secret squirt gun attached to his eyes to squirt people when they stare. A minute later, Jack asks if August can get plastic surgery, and August jokingly points to his face and says that his face looks the way it does after plastic surgery. Jack suggests that August sue his doctor, and their teacher separates them for laughing loudly.
In this conversation, Jack's curiosity doesn't come across with any ill intent. By establishing a friendship and a sense of trust, Jack and August are both able to be more open and share more of themselves with each other.
Themes
The Difficulty of Kindness Theme Icon
Identity Theme Icon