Otherwise Known As Sheila the Great Activities

Instructor: Kristen Goode

Kristen has been an educator for 25+ years - as a classroom teacher, a school administrator, and a university instructor. She holds a doctorate in Education Leadership.

'Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great' is a chapter book by Judy Blume that fits into the ~'Fudge~' series. Use the activities in this asset to make the book come alive and leave a lasting impression on young readers.

Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great

Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great is a fascinating story about a girl trying to mask her deep fears of spiders, dogs, and water. As she interacts with friends and others during a summer camp experience, she does everything she can to appear fearless and strong. Everything comes unraveled at a slumber party, and Sheila must figure out how to explain and move past those fears that she simply could not hide. The activities below, intended for upper elementary students, can be used to help students make connections with Sheila and her story.

Write About a Fear

Materials: writing paper, pencils

  • Begin by talking about Sheila and her phobias (spiders, dogs, water).
  • Next, ask students to share some of their own fears. Encourage class discussion (regardless of how simple or complex each fear might be).
  • Give each student writing paper and a pencil.
  • Instruct students to write about a fear they have (if they say they do not have a fear to write about, suggest some ideas or have them make one up). Their writing should include:
    • An explanation of the fear they have.
    • A description of how that fear affects their daily life.
    • An idea about how they might help themselves overcome the fear.
  • When finished, let each student read their writing to the class. Again, allow for class discussion.

Chapter Presentations

Materials: writing paper, pencils, additional supplies as determined by each group

  • Put students into five groups.
  • Assign each group a series of chapters from the book:
    • Chapters 1-3
    • Chapters 4-6
    • Chapters 7-9
    • Chapters 10-12
    • Chapters 13-14
  • Explain that each group is going to reread their assigned chapters and develop a presentation that will summarize those chapters for the rest of the class. Presentations might be:
    • Skits
    • Reader's theater
    • Oral summary
    • Any other type of presentation as approved by the teacher
  • Allow time for students to work. Encourage creation of visual aids or props to make presentations even more interesting.
  • When ready, have each group give their chapter presentation to the class. Be sure to have each group present in order so as to create a chronological summary of the book.

Compare Yourself to Sheila

Materials: drawing paper, colored pencils or markers

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