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Here are ideas for interesting things to do while reading Opal's diary.

Suggest your own ideas for Strategies!

Idea #1: Focus your attention on just one character.

When people write diaries they often tell about other people. In Opal's case "people" included all her many pets. Take her pet pig, Peter Paul Rubens, for instance. Opal first mentions Peter Paul Rubens in Chapter 1, and talks about him all the way through to Chapter 38.

Now, rather than read Opal's Diary straight through, you might want to focus on Peter Paul Rubens for awile and skip around the diary reading just about him. One way to do this is to use one of the SEARCH Boxes located around the diary to find all the paragraphs where Opal mentions Peter. If you type "Peter Paul Rubens" (including the quote marks) into a Seach Box and press the Seach Button, you will get a list of all those paragraphs.

Here's a Search Box. Try it!

You should find there are 39 paragraphs where Opal mentions Peter Paul Rubens.

As you read these paragraphs, you might ask yourself questions like these:

  1. What is the "story" of Peter Paul Rubens? How does it start? Where does it end? What interesting things happen between Opal and Peter Paul Rubens? Is it a happy story? Can you write a short summary of Peter Paul Rubens' Story?
  2. Is Peter Paul Rubens always the main character in the paragraphs?
  3. Does Opal's relationship with Peter Paul Rubens change from one part of the diary to another?

You can read about any of the people or pets Opal tells us about in this same way. Do a search for their name and then study the paragraphs you find. There's a list of everyone in the diary on the Characters page.

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Last updated: January 20
, 2000.