WHIRLIGIG Culminating Projects

WHIRLIGIG Culminating Projects

WHIRLIGIG Culminating Projects


Why does the author alternate chapter settings in the four states where Brent builds and leaves whirligigs (considering the author’s craft)? Make your explanation clear and use examples from the text to support your opinion.

Choose one of the characters in the alternating chapters (chapters NOT about Brent’s journey) and write at least a one-page note that the character might leave pinned to the whirligig This should be at least one page. That means 325 words typed and double-spaced. Your ideas should connect with what is in the chosen chapter but be original and show that you understand the effects the whirligig had on the character’s life, feelings, or thinking.


Using the information in the text and a road atlas of the United States, trace the route Brent takes on the Greyhound bus during his journey of restitution for Lea’s death. Begin by listing the cities and highway numbers that are listed in the text.

Create a hand-drawn map of the United States. DO NOT use an existing road map or computer printouts of maps. The map should be at least 24 inches by 24 inches in size and clearly labeled. Trace Brent’s journey, clearly labeling all relevant cities, route numbers and states. Use a few arrows to make it clear in what direction Brent is traveling. Clearly indicate locations where Brent left a whirligig.

At the end of the novel, Brent thought he might build more whirligigs. He might “start a lifetime project of putting one up in every state.” Pick three states in which Brent has NOT placed a whirligig. In each of the three states, pick a town or city, tell what one you picked, and describe the whirligig Brent will build in that location. Explain why he chose whatever design he builds there. Draw a picture of it, if you wish. The written portion should be about one page (325 words) in length.


Research the number of highway accidents in Connecticut for the most recent ten-year period for which statistics are available. Then determine how many of these accidents were caused by drunk drivers. Now find out how many of these alcohol related driving accidents resulted in a death. Also determine how many of these alcohol related fatal accidents involved teenagers and how many involved other age groups. You can break these statistics down to show what months had the highest and lowest DUI accidents and deaths.

Now construct graphs to clearly compare the data gathered. You may need more than one graph. Clearly label each axis and construct a meaningful scale for each axis. Give each graph a title. Refer to your notes from Mrs. Penney’s class if you need more information on how to construct a graph.

Write a one page 325-350 word (minimum) summary of the information on your graphs. Include whether DUI fatalities have increased or decreased over the past ten years.


Diagram the constellations Brent sees and mentions throughout his journey. Find out the astrological meaning of each constellation. Label each constellation and attach an explanation of it near the each diagram. This should be no less than poster board size. Do a 250-300 word write-up explaining which star may hold the most meaning for Brent and why you chose the star you did. Find supporting evidence from the text to strengthen your opinion.


Think about Brent’s journey and how he changes along the way as a result of building the whirligigs. Design and build a whirligig to atone for something you have done or to honor someone you know (living or dead). Include a written explanation of what the whirligig stands for, why you chose to build it, and how you constructed it. Your explanation should be typed, a page (325 words) long, and have lots of information about the importance of the various items you used in your whirligig. Be sure to explain how you made the whirligig, who helped you (if anyone did), and what parts you did yourself including what tools (if any) you used in the construction process.

All projects will be presented to the class. The student will explain his/her project and answer any questions the class may have. This will be part of the grade.