Friday, January 13, 2012
Darth Paper Strikes Back - The Return of Origami
We spent our morning folding origami Darth Vaders, with step-by-step instructions from Tom Angleberger's Darth Paper Strikes Back...
...a sequel to his earlier story of Dwight, an introverted middle schooler, who gains attention if not popularity, when he discovers he can communicate, and dispense "sage" advice through a folded paper Yoda finger puppet.
Darth Paper Strikes Back finds Dwight in trouble due largely to misunderstanding, and a few malicious forces. It's up to his friends, and some emergency folding, to straighten things out.
The back of the book has instructions for folding a paper Darth Vader (the puppet of choice for the villain of the book). There are also separate, and different instructions on the author's website. The large white Darth Vader in the picture at the top is what we got following the website instructions as closely as we could manage. The Darth "Penguin", black and white versions are what happened when we followed the instructions but switched to origami paper (our black paper had white on the back).
And the skinny fellow, with lady bugs on his "teeth" is from following the instructions in the book, using whatever origami paper we happened to have had left.
The book also contains instructions for playing out the Star Wars "Death Star" battle, on paper. It's not particularly pretty...
...but we found it surprisingly entertaining.
I noticed Amazon has the book listed for ages 8 and up. As far as reading level goes, that's probably about right, but since the story revolves around a group of middle school aged boys, I would suggest a slightly higher age recommendation. It should be clear to older readers, that Dwight speaks through his puppet, because of shyness, and that the puppet, even though it looks like Yoda, does not have any special powers or knowledge of its own, younger children might be confused.
Still, it's a cute story, and inspired my 14 year old to spend a few minutes doing origami, and playing a game that didn't have to be plugged in, which is a good enough recommendation for me.
It's great to be a homeschooler.