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Elementary, Middle


What do the children you know usually do when school is out for the summer? Go crazy with boredom? Head poolside with friends? Plan a self-sufficient civilization with its own staple food crop? That is precisely how Wesley decides to spend his summer vacation. Wesley is not an ordinary boy: "He alone in his town disliked pizza and soda, alarming his mother and the school nurse. He found professional football silly. He'd refused to shave half his head, the hairstyle worn by all the other boys, despite his father's bribe of five dollars".

It all starts (the civilization, that is) when Wesley overturns a plot of ground in his yard to see what new and unknown seeds might blow into it. Curiously, just one kind grows--an unusual, flowering, fruit-bearing plant that tastes of "peach, strawberry, pumpkin pie, and flavors he had no name for." Soon, Wesley is literally reaping the fruits of his labors--using the fruit rind to make a cup for the juice he squeezes, barbecuing the root tubers, and weaving the bark into a hat to keep off the sun.

General Assessment

Recommendation of how and where to use it

As students are beginning to look at building communities within their own school, Weslandia, is a perfect way to begin conversations about diversity within the classroom.  This book may also be helpful addition to units on world civilizations.  Weslandia will also support units on farming and sustainable consumption.  Students may be encouraged to create projects that depict their own fictional civilizations. 

Relevant Curriculum Units

The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.

Themes Addressed

Citizenship (2)

  • Community-Building and Participation
  • Sustainable Consumption

Ecosystems (1)

  • Appreciating the Natural World

Food & Agriculture (3)

  • Conventional Farming
  • Local Food
  • Organic Farming