Grounded: Activity Book

About the Activity Book

Have you ever been grounded? If so, it may have been because you did something that your parents or teacher were not pleased about. Maybe you’ve been grounded for something that you didn’t do – that wasn’t your fault. If so, you can understand how the children in this story feel.

It’s summer holidays, and it looks as if another boring summer is about to happen – nothing that’s fun is allowed because of the polio scare. But to make matters worse, polio strikes again but this time at home as the characters in the story find out.

Grounded is about kids and relationships. It’s about disappointments and learning how to accept things you have no say in – things that just happen, and you have to deal with them whether you like it or not.

The story takes place in the 1950s (1954 -1955 to be exact). The depression is in the past as well as the two world wars. There is lots of work, and people are being paid higher wages so have money to spend on the latest new technology like black and white televisions, new kitchen appliances, and the day of the long, sleek car with fins has arrived. Fashion is new and trendy, and entertainment has changed with Elvis Presley, now king of the new craze called ‘rock and roll’.

However, despite all the positive changes, there is still unrest. Although Blacks have been given their freedom, there is still segregation and discrimination. Some have escaped into Canada by way of the Underground Railway, but Canada is not totally free of racism either, Dresden, Ontario, being an example of this. In the States, Blacks are demanding equal rights, and when Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat to a white man, the civil rights movement begins with Martin Luther King Jr. leading the cause. And polio continues to kill and mane its victims. Thankfully there are advances in medical research, and Dr. Salk and his team continue their search for a vaccine that will prevent polio, and in 1955, finally, children get their summers back when the Salk vaccine is declared safe and effective. Ironically, this announcement is made ten years to the day after Franklin Roosevelt died. Roosevelt, who after getting polio at the age of thirty-nine, championed on behalf of polio victims and on becoming President of the United States, proved that even with a disability you can make a difference in the world.

Even though children today in our part of the world no longer have to worry about getting polio thanks to the Salk vaccine, they may have to face other diseases such as cancer for which at this time there is no vaccine to protect them from. And there may be other disappointments, sadness and loss that children experience that they have no control over – a pet dies, a family member leaves, there is a bully at school. Still, as the children in the story find out there is hope, and in the end, there is triumph even though it may look different than they might ever have imagined.

What’s in it for you and your students?

For your students

  • A variety of activities for all levels of abilities, preferences, and learning styles
  • Have a sense of accomplishment, pride, and appreciation when completing an activity.
  • Realize that learning can be fun.
  • Learn an appreciation for the past

For you, the teacher

  • A chart explaining how Grounded can be linked with your curriculum
  • A Table of Contents for ease in locating the various themes and topics
  • Pages that can be duplicated for your convenience
  • Activities designed to encourage critical thinking
  • Enrichment material for those students who are self-directed and require an extra challenge
  • Happy students while learning

Activity book

A workbook suitable for ages 8+.

This is a book for adults and children to read and share. Why not do the activities together?

Regardless of the level of abilities, preferences, and learning styles of your students, there is something for everyone in this activity book because of the variety of ideas, all of which are related to the story.

Some of your students may like trivia, word searches, or solving puzzles, while others prefer inventing a game, designing a stamp, role-playing or baking brownies.

Maybe you have some curious students who wonder about things and enjoy researching to find the answers – answers to questions like how it felt to be in an iron lung, or how Mr. Roosevelt was able to become the president after getting polio, or how Rosa Park’s decision changed history.

Do you have leaders in your class who like to help others? What about organizing a mini March of Dimes?

Any adventurous types who like to find out about other parts of the world? Maybe they can show the students on the globe where Ricky lives compared to Marie and guess how far apart they are.

Then there are those who speak through pen or paintbrush, whether through poem or prose, cartoon images or depictions of the real world.

Each of the above mentioned can feel accepted and appreciated no matter the means of expression while enjoy learning at the same time.

NOTE: And Yes. This book can be used by all ages in many situations – Night school, Sunday school, discussion groups, a child’s book club, etc.


  • Standard Workbook size with Coil binding
  • 88 pages
  • Word searches etc. free to copy
  • A lot of activities
  • Riddles, trivia and recipes
  • Historical information related to the story
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