Ideas for Learners Promoting Literacy, Inquiry, and Meaningful Learning Experiences
Sliding Into Home by Dori Hillestad Butler

Book Summary

Joelle is a baseball player from Minneapolis, just like her older brother.  When Joelle's family moves to a small town in Iowa, she is surprised to discover that girls there only have a softball team at school, while the boys play baseball.  Can Joelle convince the coach to let her try out for the baseball team?

Sliding Into Home book cover
Sliding Into Home

Book Review

This book features a strong female character without pushing any extremes.  Joelle is assertive and takes reasonable steps to question authority without being rude.  She has conflicts with some peers (female and male) and reflects about what it means to be a good friend.  The book also deals with family relationships, especially between Joelle and her brother, who has started college.  This is an excellent book to use with students to study different perspectives and points of view, and it moves beyond dated arguments about whether or not girls are athletes.  Instead, it examines how policies and proposals affect different groups, and what it means to be fair.

I really wish the book had an update cover design, because this one doesn't tend to draw students to pull it off the shelves. It's a worthwhile story, and a good read.

left 3D quotation mark

Joelle sighed.  There was always somebody somewhere telling her no."
  p. 126

Topics and Themes for this book:

  • Open-Mindedness
  • Changing Policies; How Changes Affect Different Groups
  • Sibling Relationships
  • Female Baseball Players
  • School Sports Programs

Discussion Questions for this book:

The best discussion questions, of course, are generated by and contemplated by readers. These questions are designed to avoid major spoilers about the book, and to provide a starting point for teachers, parents, and student reading groups.

**Questions coming soon**

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