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4-6th Grade Book Club: Omega City by Diana Peterfreund w/DIY Stress Ball

Omega City by Diana Peterfreund is the first book in a juvenile fiction series for 4-6 graders.

Gillian Seagret knows her dad isn't crazy, even if everyone else thinks he is. She is always on his side, even when his conspiracy theories about a lost Cold War technology, by a scientist named Dr. Underberg, causes him to lose his job and forces the family to move to the middle of nowhere. Gillian is determined to prove everyone wrong.

So, when Gillian is given the opportunity to do just that, she jumps at the chance. When she discovers a missing piece to a puzzled left behind by Dr. Underberg, Gillian thinks she's about to uncover Dr. Underberg's greatest invention.

With the help of her skeptical brother, Eric, best friend, Savannah, and space obsessed classmate, Howard and his brother, Nate, Gillian finds that all bets are off and that this might be one mystery that is better left alone.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What is this book about? What are the main themes?

  2. Gillian and Eric’s dad makes a living lecturing on conspiracy theories. What are conspiracy theories? Can you name any?

  3. In the beginning of the book Eric says, “Why wouldn’t people want something” that makes the world better? His dad replies, “The sad truth is, sometimes it’s easier for people to stick with the problems they know than try to imagine a new way of life.” Is this true? Why?

  4. Gillian uses the word “Them” to refer to the people who are after her and her friends. Who is “Them?”

  5. Dr. Underberg creates this underground bunker for the general population. How is city specifically designed for the everyday man?

  6. We don’t find out what happened to Omega City until the very end of the book. What did you think happened as you were reading?

  7. In 1947 the Doomsday Clock was created. Whether right or wrong, the Doomsday Clock is a design that warns the public about how close we are to destroying the world with man-made objects. How close would Dr. Underberg say we are to the end of the world?

  8. Howard wants to go with Dr. Underberg into space. Would you want to travel to space?

  9. Gillian says there is a difference between “summer Savannah” and “school Savannah.” Why is that? Do find yourself acting differently around different groups of people?

  10. Where do you think this book series will go next?

DIY Stress Ball

Supplies: Two balloons – one white or clear; Water; Glitter (dry glitter, not wet); Scissors


  1. Take your darker colored balloon and cut small holes into the widest part. Don’t get too close to the neck of the balloon.

  2. Take your clear or lightest color balloon and fill it with a few scoops of glitter.

  3. Carefully, insert your glitter filled balloon into your balloon with the holes. Leave the neck of the glitter balloon hanging out.

  4. Fill your glitter balloon with enough water that is just starts to inflate. Tie a knot in the neck.

  5. Pull the neck of the balloon with holes over the glitter balloon and tie a knot.

  6. Squeeze and ta-da!

"When you squeeze a stress ball, the muscles in your hand contract and release, releasing some of the tension being carried by other parts of your body. If you take deep breaths while squeezing and releasing the ball, you progressively relax, eventually releasing the hold stress has on your body. "


How'd it go:

Super small crew today but we had a good discussion and our activity worked the way it was supposed to.

That's all for now!


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