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The Acorn People

3.49  ·  Rating Details ·  637 Ratings  ·  112 Reviews
This true story of a boy who must overcome prejudice and weakness to treat a group of special needs children with the respect—and love—they deserve “will give your innards a bear hug. . . . You will read this book with a lump in your throat.” (Lincoln Journal)

From Ron Jones, a teacher who started the classroom program that inspired the movie The Wave, comes a memoir abou
Paperback, 89 pages
Published June 11th 1996 by Laurel Leaf (first published January 1st 1976)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jan 31, 2012 A.J. rated it did not like it
This book is written from an able-bodied perspective that comes off as glorifying the able-bodied for dealing with disabled children rather than teaching about differences and acceptance. I feel that the author intentionally exaggerated the physical disabilities of the children to the point that they were grotesque and unreal. The book was short and many passages were vague and nondescript. And many times when a passage commented on some triumph or the children acting “normal,” he slams it back ...more
This is a short, simple little book with an enormous emotional impact. It is a book about the meaning of humanity, and how acceptance can bring joy and understanding, and why it is important to cherish each moment.

The author is not a brilliant writer, but they do know how to tell a story, probably from their background as an educator and a camp counselor. However, the simplicity of the writing increases its impact a bit because 1) the story is so compelling, you realize the author just had to g
Glittery Mango (Ealee)
I had to read this book as an assignment in English class, and this book was so short that I just went ahead and finished it. I'll admit it, I hated the book in the beginning, Ron annoyed me, and i kept rolling my eyes. But in the last parts, it started to get a whole lot better. There was some humor, and this book I get the message and all that, but it didn't relate to me or have as big as an emotional impact. The epilogue was beautiful though, that was my favorite part of the book. I thought t ...more
I didn’t like the book The Acorn People because some of the words were long and I didn’t know how to say the words. The book was boring and every time I started reading it I got a headache. I like books that are a little funny and interesting to me. What I learned that even if you are in a wheelchair can still do some of the that people that are able to do things to. The only part of the book that was good is the part that they played all of the games they played, climbing mountains, and swimmi ...more
Feb 05, 2016 Jeff added it
The Acorn People is not a book about what you would think. You probably envision a children's book about people and acorns. This, however, is not the case. It is a true story based in a summer camp named, “Camp Wiggin”. A college student, named Ron, has decided to become a camp counselor. Before he became a counselor, he envisioned an adventure of hiking through the woods, swimming in the sun, and stories by the campfire. He wanted to make his dream come true and be a camp counselor. And that h ...more
Hunter Poor
Feb 04, 2016 Hunter Poor rated it really liked it
The Acorn people is about a camp named Camp Wiggin which was supposed to be a boy scout camp but it quickly turned into a handicap camp. Young Ron has to help this handicap kids have the best summer they possibly can. He had to assign each kid to a cabin but he faced a struggle. I enjoyed the book because it was funny and you would never really expect something like that to happen. There was a lot of things that you wouldn’t expect handicapped kids to do that their actually really good at.

In t
Nov 11, 2012 Liz rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-books
"nice" book in that you feel a glimmer of hope and encouragement, but I really did not care for it, and will not use it in my classroom again. On a personal level, the description of what MS is was awful. i recognize that research has come a long way since this book was published, but I dealt with explaining to my students that, just like each of them, not every disability is the same and what MS really entails. (I am not an expert, nor am I a neophyte, I have MS)
Feb 05, 2016 Isaiah added it
I read a bitter sweet fairy tale about all theses kids that are handicap and cant do things that the boy scouts at the camp. People that take care of the handicap would read this book and cry like a little baby. The person I liked the most in this story was Spider. Spider In the story had no legs had no arms and was in a wheel chair.

My teacher made me read this and at first I thought it was gonna be stupid then I realized it wasn't so bad after allI identify with all the kids that like to break
Feb 05, 2016 Nathan added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Charley Guernsey
A camp that didn’t approve of special needs kids. Was that even possible? Yes, it was. Camp Wiggin discriminated against special needs kids. The camp thought they couldn’t do things. Such as; shooting arrows, cooking, taking hikes, and singing. “The Acorn People” might of had specific limitations. But they showed Camp Wiggin wrong. They showed them, they could do anything, they set their minds too. I liked, “The Acorn People.” Because it makes you realize. You can do anything, if you just try!

This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 05, 2016 Bstrahan rated it really liked it
This book was good when it was talking about handicap kids doing the same things that the boy scouts can do. I would recommend you reading this book if you like handicap people. This book is about handicap kids that are at a old boy scout camp. And there was these kids they were best friends. They would do everything together. And one day they were talking about that they should walk up a hill because the boy scouts could do it, so they were trying to do the same. And then at the end the kids ma ...more
Mar 03, 2014 Bren rated it liked it
I've seen this book open the eyes of my middle school students who read below grade level. Ron is a thoughtless jerk at the beginning of the story, and it is interesting to see him grow. While reading in class as we approach the end of the book we return to the first few pages and reread Ron's description of the lifeless bodies that he handles the first couple days. This is my favorite part of the novel discussion, as the students are now able to put names and personalities to those "bodies" and ...more
Jack Moyotl
Feb 05, 2016 Jack Moyotl rated it liked it
The book was an ok story but not really for my sense of taste . But the story takes place in a camp that is for the handicapped and that they are about to experience new things that they have never tried before because the kids were always at home just doing nothing and they could never do anything themselves. The acorn people is a very inspirational and i recommend the book to anyone who is handicapped because it gives a strong message that your still human and you can do anything just like a r ...more
Mar 22, 2015 Amy rated it it was amazing
I adore this book. I read it first when I was in eighth grade for a book report, and knew immediately I'd read it again for a current book challenge (I'm now in my 30s). I was attracted to it since it is about a summer camp for children with disabilities (my sister has Down syndrome). It is a very short but very powerful book. It is incredibly well-written; Ron Jones gives us his honest reactions to being a camp counselor for the first time for these types of people. I don't want to give any of ...more
Feb 05, 2016 Kevin added it
In this book is about a group of kids who are handicapped and go to a camp and are trying to fit in this camp is for kids that can cook and can shoot for archery and it's hard for them because they are in wheelchairs and can't use their legs.

It makes stuff hard for them to climb and do stuff like that but these kids won't give up they are determined to do everything that the other people do they want to be just like the other kids and they want to be the best they can be they are trying to make
I read The Acorn people, which was a very well written and easy book to read. The Author of this book was Ron Jones. In this book a bunch of handicap kids go to a camp where they get to explore things they never thought they could do.

When the kids got there I thought it was silly that they were teaching them swimming safety, because I'm pretty sure they can’t swim anyways. They were able to make some things work though. When they went on a hike up the hill they scooted up it with their butts. T
Mario Ulloa
Feb 05, 2016 Mario Ulloa rated it liked it
I did not like the book "The Acorn People" because it said a lot of things that took away my apatite i tried to read it while i ate but i had to put the book down. It was a little boring but over all i ended up not liking it the only people i would recamend this to is people who want a short book because this is an 80 page book. That is the only reason i chose it the book talks about kids that have advisability going to a camp site. It tells you that some kids cant walk the other ones can but th ...more
Skyler Morgan
I liked the book because it was a camp and the people/staff there helped the kids. They taught the kids how to swim, the staff showed the kids videos on how to swim. It was a safety rule, so they had to show it to the kids. The kids had fun because they did things that they never did at home, like campfires, and story time. There was some parts of the book I didn't like because some staff wasn't really nice to some of the kids. I would recommend this book to people I know because I think my frie ...more
Apr 30, 2014 Sanya!! rated it liked it
It was a good story but didn't wasn't really long enough to grasp it.... and the ending.... really?
Feb 08, 2013 Lxsrbnsn9 rated it it was amazing
This is a great story for young adults very inspiring
May 10, 2014 Rachel rated it it was amazing
I tend to hang out with special needs kids and have friends who have specials needs but mostly they are not physical problems. I automatically loved this book from the very first word to the very last word. I almost cried at the very end but didn't want to draw attention to myself in class. One of the best books (and probably is the best book) I have ever ever read. You see, I can't stand to reread a book unless I forgot it or want to. And want to reread a book happens very rarely. This book I w ...more
Joanthan Madera
Feb 04, 2016 Joanthan Madera rated it really liked it
I read “The Acorn People” by Ron Jones, it’s a great book, it’s short and sweet. The book is about handicapped children going to camp, but this camp is not place for the handicapped. The world’s worst camp turns into one of the funnest, this book can make any awful day turn into a great day. I would recommend this book to everyone I see, but especially those who are handicap, it brings hope to the handicap community. Overall the book is short and sweet, don’t like to read a lot, don’t need to, t ...more
Marcy Janssen
All of the students at my school were required to read this book in their English class. There was also an assembly on diversity. The purpose was to get the students to recognize that even though someone might be different than they are, doesn't mean that they should be treated any differently (being picked on and etc). This book is great at showing how even students with different disabilities are still special and unique in their own way.

It's about this counselor who doesn't really know what a
Title: The Acorn people By: Ron Jones

The book wasn’t to bad. I just didn’t really grab my attention. I personally like either more action books or drama/ mystery ones. I would record this book to anyone. It doesn’t hurt to read it and discover something new or maybe learn something out of it. You won’t know if you liked the book just by judging out from it’s cover and saying you won’t like it. I thought it wold be a really boring book, but It wasn’t to bad as I made it seem.
Feb 04, 2016 Cassie rated it liked it
My opinion on this book was that It was an okay book. It wasn't the best best, because it talked about Ron not wanting to touch the handicapped kids because he thought he'd get it. He also didn't like feeding them, he feed them with a look on his face. It had good courage though that if the boy scouts can do it they can climb the mountain too. When they made the acorn necklaces I thought it was neat. Other than that the book was okay and fast to read.
I didn't remember this by the title; I had it associated with something I read once about susannah? a doll who wore an acorn cap and shared space with a squirrel? I think that was a picture book. anyway, this is about being a counselor at a camp for disabled kids, and when I read the description I did get an impression from reading it, so it's not totally forgotten like so many of the books I read 35 years ago.
May 27, 2015 Sara added it
I'm in love, I've been and still go to sleep away camp like the kids in the book and I felt such a connection, how everyone is sad and depressed the final days of being at your true home and never wanting to leave, I felt all the pride and love and friendship they felt and it made me really miss camp but excited for it too. Also I've been in a reading slump for 2 MONTHS and I'm finally think I'm ready to read again
James Meece
Feb 04, 2016 James Meece rated it liked it
‘’The acorn people’’ Is about where there is a camp and there a kid that don’t
get to do a lot of stuff and at this camp they get to have fun but at the beginning
they act bored and stuff because when they need help wherever they go and then
at the end they act the same way they do at the beginning but the get to do a lot of fun stuff at the camp.
May 23, 2011 Virag rated it it was ok
I just read this today as an extra-credit English class assignment. It's only 80 pages long, and heck, the pages are tiny, so I finished this book in less than an hour.

The Acorn People is about Ron Jones, a man who starts working at a summer camp. At the begining of the novel (or should I say novella??), he is majorly ****** off when he discovers that the kids in the camp have disabilities. And it's bad - some have missing limbs, or muscle/bone diseases, bladder problems, are blind and whatnot.
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Ron Jones is an American writer, teacher in Palo Alto, California, and San Francisco, California and storyteller. He is internationally known for the adaptation of the classroom experience he started, called The Third Wave.

Since 1981 he has worked with people who have mental and physical disabilities.

author of Kids Called Crazy; The Acorn People, Life in the Sunset, and others

He is a graduate of
More about Ron Jones...

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“Why can't life be like this? Human beings in all their magnificence. Working to find that moment of pride. That one second of excellence at being alive...The feeling of belonging not just to oneself but to the entire universe.” 2 likes
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