The Art of Keeping Cool Extension Activity
- Grades: 6–8
1. Based on descriptions in the book, make a map of the local Rhode Island setting, including Robert's home in his grandparents' house; the village at Sachem's Head, Fort Brook; Abel's hidden home in the woods; etc. Use the map as a visual aid as you retell the story.
This activity offers students the opportunity to visualize the setting of the novel, using the author's descriptions to create their own maps. Students will also have the opportunity to review the story as they draw their maps.
2. Create an article for a local Rhode Island paper in 1942 describing one effect of World War II on the people of Sachem's Head. Examples: the arrival of big guns at Fort Brooks, the death of a soldier overseas, and the growing trend of housewives working in factories.
With this activity, students will gain experience writing a journal-style article telling about a real historical event. Students might be encouraged to illustrate their article with a "photo" to help tell the story.