Hot Sites


Visit the hyperlinked sites to help further your understanding of many of the themes of the novel by conducting outside research.


  1. Child Abuse: There are different forms of child abuse: two forms are emotional abuse, including verbal, psychological, identity, spiritual, and isolation, and physical abuse, including neglect, sexual, and battery.  You can look up definitions and categories of abuse at:
  2. Play Therapy: Georgia Brown, T.J.’s counselor and friend, tries to help Heidi by using a method called “Play Therapy.”  For a definition on Play Therapy as a special kind of Child Psychology, visit:
  3. Bullies Big & Small: Author Chris Crutcher shows that bullies can be found not only in some kids, but in a few adults also.  T.J. has his own unique ways of dealing with the two bullies, Mike Barbour and Rich Marshall, in his life.  Here are some tips on how to handle the bullies that might be in your school, as well as an insight on what makes bullies bully:
  4. The Misfit Team: One could call them “misfits,” but, relatively speaking, the misfits somehow fit with one another. To visit the homepage of a member of another popular misfit team check out:
  5. Basking in the Reflected Glory of the Letter Jacket: The Letter Jacket stands for different symbols according to different characters in Crutcher’s Cutter High: pride, victory, goals, association, identity…To find out what the Letter Jacket traditionally stands for, you can check out:
  6. Special Olympics: Chris had an intellectual disability but was still able to participate in group sports.  The Special Olympics Organization is committed to reaching the intellectually disabled to improve their physical and mental health.  To find out what other benefits these activities provide explore:
  7. Adoption: Although T.J. only briefly mentions the adoption process, adoption is not easy it has both financial and legal obligations.  To find out what his adoptive parents had to go thought in the adoptive process explore:
  8. Irony: Chris Crutcher uses irony throughout his novel Whale Talk as a literary device. To find out more about irony and to help further your understanding of the irony within the book visit:
  9. Whale Song:  Whale songs travel hundreds of miles in the ocean.  To learn more about these amazing songs visit:
  10. Guardian ad Litem: T.J.'s father is a Guardian ad Litem for the state.  His job is to represent the best interests of wards of the state who may not be able to represent themselves.  To learn more about what a Guardian ad Litem does visit:
  11. Lemmings: Small, furry rodents that are slightly larger than rats.  They become a metaphor for many of the jocks at Cutter High.  To learn more about these mammals and how they relate to the book visit:
  12. Prosthetic Leg: Many of the characters compete in swimming despite physical or mental handicaps.  To learn more about athletes who compete with prosthetics visit:


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