1. Marius

    The classmates are extremely mean because they do not understand dyslexia and call her a idiot. Especially Eric, he teased and laughed at her. The classmates have no empathy, they don’t understand Trisha’s problems. Although they are just being kids. Eric was probably the meanest classmate he “…Leaned in her face and called her toad…”

    • tbui

      Marius, you describe the classmates and provide evidence to support how they are mean. When you list several reasons to prove your point, try using transitional words or phrases. (For example, also, in addition…)

  2. Timmy

    The students are mean because they bully Trisha, and mess around with her(pulling hair, calling dumb, bullying physically). Eric makes his friends and others bully Trisha to so Trisha has almost every student against her. The student are the bad people for Trisha and the school.

    • tbui

      Timmy, you describe the students and provide some evidence to show how they are mean. Try to describe each incident a little more than lumping them together “(pulling hair, calling dumb, bullying physically)”. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Ayushi Prakash

    The students in California are mean because they are calling her dumb and laughing on her. Eric (student) was being very miserable to her because he would pull her hair and it seemed like he hated her. He would also convince his other friends to be nasty to her. In addition Eric was bullying her. When Mr. Folker caught Eric he was taken to the office.

    • tbui

      Ayushi, you describe the students using a description and provide some reasons why they are mean. Try to be a little more specific in explaining your evidence. Instead of saying someone was being miserable, give the exact ways how he is. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Dowon Kim


    The classmates of both Trisha’s new and old school do not understand that Trisha has dyslexia. They tease her about her reading and laughs when she reads aloud because of her stuttering. Trisha does not have friends because she hides under the dark staircase during recess to avoid the bullies. However, the students seem to recognize her amazing drawings because when Mr. Falker compliments her, they look at her drawings. Also, in Trisha’s old school her classmates are awed by her art. Trisha stops wanting to go to school because of her bullying classmates and the embarrassment. They ignore Trisha as if she were not part of the class because of her limited reading. Trisha’s classmates stop teasing her when Mr. Falker shouts at them because they were laughing at their reading. Eric is a major bully that pestered Trisha because he was jealous of the compliments she received from Mr. Falker. Eric stopped after he was caught teasing her. Generally, all the classmates don’t like Trisha and they don’t approve of her.

    • tbui

      Dowon, you summarize the protagonist’s experience with her classmates. Try to describe the classmates using one adjective and then provide examples from the text to prove that description.

  5. Sophia Eigenmann

    Trisha was in Kindergarden and couldn’t wait to start reading, her brother told her she will start reading in first grade. Trisha was in first grade. Everytime when the class was sitting in a circle reading, everybody was able to read except Trisha she just couldn’t even get a word out of her mouth. When it was her turn to read the teacher just moved on to the next student to read. Then she got into fifth grade everything changed because there was a new teacher teaching fifth grade Mr.Falker. For Mr.Falker it didn’t seem to matter which students were the smartest etc. Everybody would make fun of her but Mr.Falker made it stop. Except one person, a boy teased and laughed at her for another two years. It was a very hard time for her the boy turned all the classmates against her. She was very sad and started hating school and wanted to go to school less and less. One day Mr.Falker stopped the boy from making fun of her and teasing her. From that day on nobody teased or laughed at her ever again. Mr.Falker gave Trisha confident and said she should believe in herself. Some days Mr.Falker and Trisha stayed after school and they talked learnt etc. One day Mr.Falker gave her a book and she started to try reading it. One word after another one came out she could read.

    An overview from Mr.Falker.
    • Mr. Falker was her fifth grade teacher
    • He gave her confident and gave her the message to believe in herself
    • He helped her to learn how to read
    • Mr.Falker also kept the classmates away from her and told them to stop teasing and laughing at Trisha.

    • tbui

      Sophia, you summarized the story and how Mr. Falker helped the protagonist. Try describing one character from the story using one adjective and providing evidence to support the description. For instance, “Mr. Falker is…” and show ways he is that way.

  6. Toribio Iriarte

    Thank you Mr. Falker

    Trisha is very persistent and never gives up. For example, even though she had a lot of peer pressure because her classmates made fun of her, she still made it through and overcame her complications. Another example that Trisha is persistent, although she had huge problems in reading because of her disease, which is dyslexia, she still tried to learn how to read and achieved her goals. After overcoming her condition, she grew up to become a writer and illustrator, which for a person that has dyslexia, is very astonishing. I believe that this is not only a very inspiring story, but it also a lesson that everyone can overcome their problems, they just need to keep trying, no matter what happens. Trisha is also a very fun and interesting person. She is different from other children. She is excited for school, to learn and discover all about reading and writing. She enjoys to spend time in long walks with her grandma and grandpa, she enjoys her life and is thankful for it.

    • tbui

      Toribio, you describe Trisha and provide several pieces of evidence that directly support your description. Good use of transitions to explain your points. (for example, another example…)

  7. Junny

    Trisha had some difficulties as a child, because a reading disorder called dyslexia which interfered her reading abilities, slowed her down during her kindergarten life, but her love for books and her grandparent’s encouragement helped her to continue on and not give up. Although as she got older, her grandparents passed away and the vocabularies she learnt got harder which made her school life harder. Also, she got bullied in 3rd grade which made her afraid of going to school. Although with the arrival of Mr. Falker, she was protected from some of the bullies and were applause by the teacher when she shined with her other talents. she also got extra reading lessons after school to improve her reading skills.

    • tbui

      Junny, you summarized the protagonist’s experience. Try describing Trisha using one adjective and providing evidence to support that description.

  8. Sasha Guzman

    Trisha grew up loving books, but when she got the chance to read she had trouble, she stumbled over words and when all the other kids reading levels moved up hers stayed the same. After her grandparents died she had given up on her self and she started to hate school more and more. She makes up things like she has a sore throat, or her stomach hurts to not go to school because the other kids tease her when she doesn’t answer the question right, or when she can’t read the sentence right. When she moved across the country she had hope that she would fit in at her new school, but it seems like the teasing was just the same or worst! When she got to 5th grade she got a teacher who was new to the school, this teacher was Mr. Falker. He believed that Trisha was intelligent and was determined to help her with the reading skills that didn’t seem to improve since the 1st grade. He helped and eventually she learned how to read, he shaped her life. If it wasn’t for Mr. Falker she would not be an author today.

    • tbui

      Sasha, you recall the protagonist’s experience with reading and school. Try to describe Trisha using one adjective and provide several pieces of evidence to support that one description.

  9. Leonardo Rubio

    Trisha has a lot of courage, shy and has a very big dream to read. She has had a very hard time in school.
    In the book, Trisha passed through hard times like getting laughed by students and going through the embarrassment of not being able to pronounce the words when she was called out to read. Trisha always tried to forget about this by drawing, which was something she loved to do. She always kept on trying but never had a good teacher to help her through her problems of reading. It took a lot of courage to move into a new school with new students and teachers. Trisha was always filled with hope that the new school was going to be better, It was not. Until fifth grade when a new teacher came, Mr Falker. Mr Falker was a very encouraging man and always was there for Trisha. Eric, a student was teasing Trisha, Mr Falker came in and caught Eric making fun of Trisha. Trisha was to shy or too embarrassed to tell Mr Faulker that some students were teasing her. Trisha finally got reading lessons and had a lot of confidence in herself about learning how to read, she went through 5 years of not knowing how to read and she still has the attitude to learn since it been her dream ever since she was little.

    • tbui

      Leo, you provide several descriptions of Trisha and summarize her school experience. Try to use one adjective to describe the protagonist and give several pieces of evidence to support that one description. Thank you for sharing.

  10. Toto Casalino

    I believe that Mr Falker is a very patient teacher because he had to wait 3-4 months until Trisha could read. Mr Falker is also a very caring person because he protects Trisha from the bully Eric. He is a very determined man because he does not give up on Trisha after all of the trial and error. I find it interesting that only he can see through Trisha’s dyslexia. Everybody focuses on her dyslexia and her supposedly great art skills. This saddens me a little because this also happens in real life, they judge books by the cover.

    • tbui

      Toto, you described Mr. Falker using many adjectives and provided an example to support your point for each one. Try describing the character using one trait and providing numerous pieces of evidence to support your point.

  11. Jaime Jimenez

    Thank you, Mr. Falker

    Trisha has a very amazing story. She did not know how to read and she hated school. In fifth grade she learned thanks to Mr. Falker, thanks to him now she even makes book to kids. She also has a very sad story, her grandma was the only one that made her feel safe, but after she died she was scared again. She is a very good drawer. When she was in kindergarten she knew how to draw very good.

    • tbui

      Jaime, describe Trisha as a protagonist. What is she like? Then, provide evidence from the text to prove this. Give specific examples to prove your description.

  12. Alexandra Vercauteren

    Trisha loves her grandparents especially her grandmother because she understands that Trisha is a special girl and Trisha doesn’t need to prove herself towards her grandmother and grandfather. When the grandmother passes away and shortly after her grandfather also passes away she finds herself alone with students making fun of her because she is different . Especially Eric who probably has a problem of his own and jealousy i think which is why he teases Trisha a lot. After Mr. Falker and ms. Plussy help out Trisha with her reading disorder and when she finally learns to read she remembers what her grandparents told her.. Honey is sweet so is knowledge, but knowledge is like the bee that made the knowledge, it has to be chased trough the pages of a book.

    • tbui

      Alexandra, you stated that the protagonist loves her grandparents. Provide evidence– actual moments from the book– to prove this point. How can you prove Trisha loves her grandparents? What evidence does the text provide to prove this?

    • Deni

      The Grandparents are loving, kind and supportive to Trisha. For example, when before school starts the Grandparents put Honey on a book and make her taste it, and Trisha loves it. Grandma also explains how knowledge is sweet too but you need to chase it through a book, like chasing a bee. In another example when Trisha says am I different Grandma explains how every firefly is different and that everybody is different and that’s whats special about us. In that conversation she also takes long time to explain that Trisha is not dumb, even though Trisha still feels dumb deep inside.

    • tbui

      Deni, you provide several pieces of evidence to support your description of the protagonists. Could you describe the grandparents using one adjective? Great examples to prove your point!

  13. Henry Cullom

    Trisha’s grandparents are loving people who don’t care that she cannot read. or should i say WERE loving people who don’t care that she cannot read. Yes, like everybody does, they “let go of the grass”. If you didn’t sad the story that means that they kicked the bucket. When they were alive, they told Trisha stories and made her feel smart. they were her inspiration.

    • tbui

      Henry, you described the grandparents as loving people and give some examples to prove your point. Try providing more specific evidence (actual actions or moments from the book) and try to steer away from giving opinions. Give facts from the text.

  14. Lena Bonifield

    Trisha is enthusiastic because every time she did something wrong and other kids would make her feel bad she would keep trying to read. When Trisha would be hard on her self for what the other kids said, she would just draw to let all her anger out. Trisha is independent because she really tried hard to fight her dyslexia and learn how to read. Trisha sometimes would feel like giving up but then she would keep working until she finally learnt how to read. Determined is a really good word to describe what Trisha felt the whole time she was learning how to read. Trisha was dyslexic, which means that when she tries to read all the words and letters get all jumbled and mixed up. Trisha was also very brave to try her best and really want to learn how to read, she wouldn’t give up and she would keep trying even if it meant staying after school every day and have a special teacher help her.

    • tbui

      Lena, you provided many descriptions for the protagonist (she is enthusiastic, independent, determined) and give one piece of evidence each to prove them. Try to give ONE description and provide many examples from the text to prove your point. The more specific evidence you have, the stronger your point will be.

  15. Lal Behar

    The student’s aren’t really kind. They make fun of Trisha even though she is trying. They keep on making fun of her by, calling her stupid and dumb. Eric never leaves Trisha alone. I think he is jealous of how the teacher acts so nice to her. The students just need to leave her alone. They are not being supportive and they need to stop making her feel stupid. Whenever Trisha is called to read something the students start to laugh and make her embarrassed.

    • tbui

      You provide one description of the protagonist and several pieces of evidence to support your point. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  16. Ella Shaye Stevenson

    Trisha is a very smart and creative young girl and she is very indapendant, because she didn’t want to tell anybody that she souldnt read or that Erik was bullying her and when she was being bullied so she started to lose her self confidence. When Mr.Falker found out that Erik had been bullying Trisha, and that she cant read, he helped her out and when he helped her out she started to build up her confidence being a strong and knowlageble girl because it is very hard to read when you have dyslexia because i had a friend who had dyslexia and he would always get frusturated. Trisha is aslo a risk taker, because with a condition like that and standing infront of your whole class too read is a big step from just reading infront of two teachers.

    • tbui

      You described the protagonist and gave specific pieces of evidence from the text that prove your points. Try to stick to ONE description and provide only examples that prove that trait.

  17. mihai muntean

    for instance, the grandparents are caring and encouraging people because they try to help her by reading to her, or telling stories In addition, they whant to show Trisha that she’s not dumb and that she can become smart. For example when Trisha was in 5th grade, she finally learned how to read then she remembered what her grandparents said and did with the book so she when she got home after reading her first book, she went and got the book her grandparents showed her and she put a spoon with honey on the cover of the book, like her grandparents did.

    • tbui

      You prove how the grandparents are caring and encouraging people through your examples, Mihai. Could you think of more specific actions or statements from the grandparents that show how caring they are? Thank you for sharing.

  18. Aleyna Lumsden

    Trisha is enthusiastic to learn to read because she loves listening to her family read stories to her and she finds it very interesting. She had always wished to read by herself. She is independent because she doesn’t ask her family members for help in reading and she doesn’t really explain to Mr. Falker about Erik bullying her. Mr. Falker has to find out himself what’s going on. If Trisha had told him that she was getting bullied than Erik would have been in trouble before. I think it was good of her trying to stand up for herself. She was hard on herself because she was calling herself dumb and stupid and trying so hard to read. She wasn’t just saying that she shouldn’t bother trying, she was pushing herself to go on. She never stops trying, she desperately wants to read. That also shows that she never gives up. She is determined to read because she is fascinated by her family members reading and she is very interested in it. She finds reading really fun. She is dyslexic because she can’t read the letters properly, as it said in the book. She can only see them as squiggly shapes. She is brave because she reads out loud to the classroom even though she knows she will get it wrong. She doesn’t make an excuse to not do it or complain, she does it.

    • tbui

      You brought up some good examples to prove that Trisha is enthusiastic to learn. You only had to share one description of the protagonist and then back it up with evidence. Thank you for sharing, Aleyna!

  19. Tarik Ashour

    Thank you, Mr. Falker

    Trisha’s grandparents are caring people. They are caring because they see Trisha as beautiful, smart and they don’t make her feel dumb. They read to Trisha whenever she visited the farm house, and they told stories to Trisha all the time. Unfortunately, they had let go of the grass. First the grandmother, then the grandfather. They had passed through the holes in the sky, into heaven.

    • tbui

      Thank you for sharing your paragraph, Tarik. You provided some great evidence to prove your point.

    • Kubra Fazlioglu

      Thank you, Mr. Falker

      Mr. Falker was the reason that Trisha was finally able to read in fifth Grade. He was always supporting her and didn’t let other students make her feel bad and dumb. He gave back self confidence to her and taught her to use her abilities and make her believe in herself. He always believed in her and how different she was. With his support she was able to read book and even influenced her to choose her future profession.

    • tbui

      Kubra, thank you for sharing your insights on Mr. Falker. What SPECIFIC evidence can you find to prove your point? Try to provide actual moments from the text as they are more convincing pieces of evidence.

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