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Lit Circles - Primary: Black Belt

About the book

Black Belt  by Nicole Pluss

"I could feel myself getting angry, like a huge wave building up inside me, like a brick wall that was going to smash everything that ran into it."

 

I suppose things aren't really back to normal yet after Susie's accident - I don't know if they ever will be. Sensei suggested we all keep a journal. But the more time I spend around Sensei the more time I find myself thinking - and not just about karate!

I'll have to work really haard to get my black belt, but karate isn't exactly what I thought it was - it's much, much more. And somehow I've got to figure it out!

GENRE: Diary stories. Self-perception

THEMES:

  • Self - perception
  • Honesty
  • Bullying
  • Diary entries
  • Coping with Disability

 

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Extension material

Questions for your circle

  • This book uses diary entries as a means to let the reader 'inside' James' head. Did you find this style of writing useful? In which ways?..
  • How do you think Susie's accident and subsequent disabilities have impacted on James?
  • Is it helpful that James has learned karate or has he used his skills for evil purposes?
  • What do you think of the Karate term : SEN NO SEN which translates to 'There is no first attack in karate'. What do you think this says about the sport/martial art?