The astronaut helmet given to Auggie by Miranda when he was much younger is a symbol of Auggie's own insecurity about the way he looks. In order to be normal, Auggie felt that he had to hide his true self. As he gets older, though, he becomes more comfortable with his appearance and learns to deal with the responses of others to his condition. After he loses the helmet, he realizes he can get by without it. His eventual positive response to Dad's final revelation, that the helmet was thrown out, confirms that Auggie has lost this old insecurity.
Auggie's various Star Wars toys, games, and merchandise are symbolic of his childhood. As he grows up over the novel, he attempts to shed this old persona and become someone new and more mature. Star Wars will always be important to him, but part of growing up is seeking out new interests and learning to leave some things behind in the past.
Certain sections of this novel contain motifs that call attention to the universe. Via begins her section with a description of the universe that is her family, and the way their universe revolves around Auggie. Justin continues this motif in his section, as he acknowledges how the universe has been unkind to Auggie in many ways, but has also blessed Auggie by giving him a loving family. The idea of the universe is important because it emphasizes that there is always something out there bigger than any single person, something guiding the way the world works.
Daisy the dog is an important symbol of the Pullman family's love and loyalty. Daisy ties the Pullmans together in a way that nothing else can, helping them to move past their fights and arguments. She is also a symbol of unconditional love; no matter what Auggie looks like, she loves him no matter what. When Daisy dies, the Pullmans have to learn to come together without their beloved dog; however, the new puppy, Bear, is a symbol of the hope they have for the future.
In any coming-of-age novel, a graduation ceremony is an important milestone that symbolizes the growth that a character has exhibited over the course of the narrative. Auggie has grown up so much during his first year at Beecher Prep, and the award he receives at graduation is representative of his kindness and courage in the face of adversity.
Wonder Questions and Answers
The Question and Answer section for Wonder is a great
resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.
Via's dad understands that she's getting older and needs to take on more responsibilies. He also knows he needs to let her make her own way. Thus, he supports her assertion that she can take the subway for two reasons; he trusts her, and he knows...