The Bridge Home Teaching Ideas

The Bridge Home Teaching Ideas

Are you looking for a great novel to read with your students? The Bridge Home by Padma Venkatraman is a great choice.

This heartwarming novel will take you on a journey of hope as you witness the unbreakable bond between siblings. The story follows the adventures of two sisters, Viji and Rukku. They run away from their abusive home in Chennai, India, and embark on a journey to find a better life in the bustling city of Bangalore.

Along the way, the sisters meet two boys, Arul and Muthu. The four become companions as they navigate the challenges of living on the streets. From finding shelter to scrounging for food, the foursome faces the harsh realities of poverty,

Despite their difficult circumstances, Viji and Rukku never lose sight of their dreams and aspirations. Their love for each other only grows stronger with each passing day. As they strive to create a new home and a brighter future for themselves, the sisters and their friends discover the power of community and the importance of standing up for what is right.

With its empowering story, positive message, and captivating plot, The Bridge Home is a perfect classroom read-aloud or book club novel.

The Bridge Home Teaching Activities

Book Unit Samples

The Bridge Home Unit Samples

Grab a free sample of The Bridge Home Novel Study. This download includes the printable version for Chapters 1-4.

Click here to get your free book unit sample.

Teaching Idea #1  – Fact Cards

True or False Fact Cards

In this handout are fact cards about several topics found in the novel The Bridge Home including the following

  • recycling
  • teenage runaways
  • India

Some of the statements on the cards are TRUE while others are FALSE. A list of activities for using the cards is also provided.

You will find 36 True-False cards in the packet. Here are a few samples. See if you know which statements are true or false.


  • You can recycle paper, plastic, glass, metal, textiles, batteries, electronic equipment, and food.
  • An average person throws away 10 pounds of trash every day.
  • 100% of our trash can be recycled.

Teenage Runaways

  • In 2019, 11% of homeless youth were between the ages of 18-24 and the remaining 89% were under 18 years old.
  • Young people experiencing homelessness are more likely than their peers to be affected by substance use disorders and mental health issues.
  • Half of the caretakers of the runaways did not know where the runaway was for at least 30 days.


  • About 1.2 billion people live in India compared to approximately 3 million people living in the United States.
  • English is the main language in India, but most people speak Hinduism as well.
  • The currency in India is the rupee.

Teaching Idea #2  – The Bridge Home Video Preview

The Bridge Home

Teaching Idea #3  – Author Resources

The Bridge Home Activities

Padma Venkatraman’s website contains a series of videos on topics from the story including mapping skills, characters’ names, and the inspiration behind the story. She also reads a chapter.

Teaching Idea #4  – Writing Prompts

The Bridge Home Activities
  1. What is the significance of the title The Bridge Home?
  2. How do the characters in the book persevere in the face of adversity?
  3. In what ways do Viji and Rukku’s experiences on the streets of Bangalore shape their understanding of the world around them?
  4. Discuss the role of family in the novel. How does the relationship between Viji and Rukku evolve throughout the story?
  5. Analyze the character of Muthu. How does he contribute to the dynamic of the group, and what impact does he have on the story?
  1. Discuss the theme of social justice in the book. How do the characters respond to the social and economic inequalities they encounter?
  2. How does the author use descriptive language to create a vivid picture of life on the streets in India? Choose one scene from the book and analyze the author’s use of sensory details.
  3. How does Arul’s passion for photography help him cope with his own difficult experiences, and how does it inspire the other characters?
  4. Analyze the character of Jayamma. How does she embody the concept of kindness and generosity, and what impact does she have on the story?
  5. Compare and contrast the settings of Chennai and Bangalore in the book. How do these two cities represent different facets of Indian society?

See the product that inspired this post.

The Bridge Home Novel Study

The Bridge Home Novel Study contains vocabulary, comprehension, constructed response writing, and skill practice.

Gay Miller

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