Bonaparte is afraid of going to school because he is literally falling apart. His friends try to help him with creative solutions, but they fall short. Finally, a “service” dog comes to the rescue by fetching Bonaparte’s bones, which helps him feel comfortable again. Although this story features Halloween characters, it is a great interactive read-aloud all year long for its cute approach in addressing the relevant themes of friendship, social anxiety, and acceptance.
After reading the story the first time, students cut-and-paste how each of Bonaparte’s friends put him back together. When students revisit the story, they take a closer look at the puns that make this story hilarious. They also have an opportunity to create their own Bonaparte Falls Apart mini book. To wrap up the week, students write about “How to be a Bone-a-fied Friend.”
A sunflower seed is convinced he is “baaaaaaad.” He confesses all of his bad behavior- cutting in line, staring at everyone, never listening, and telling long jokes with no punchlines. He was not always a bad seed. He changed for the worse after the traumatic event of being separated from his family, packaged as a snack food, and barely escaping from being eaten. The bad seed finally tires of being angry and lonely and makes a decision to be happy and change his actions. This read-aloud conveys multiple deep themes (power to change, non-judgement, growth mindset, etc.). Consequently, we highly recommended spending a week closely reading it to uncover all the author is trying to teach.
Our Interactive Read-Aloud lesson plans help you dive deep into the story by uncovering it one layer at a time. Within the first lesson, students sequence the events of the story, which is important because of the unconventional way “The Bad Seed” is organized. For the second lesson, students analyze how the seed responds to events and how his feelings change throughout the story. The third lesson is a dive into vocabulary. In the fourth, students take a close look at the illustrations and text and synthesize how they work together to deepen the meaning of the story. The final lesson is a writing prompt and fun sunflower craft to accompany it.
Students go CRAZY over Spiders by Nic Bishop. Students love the fascinating facts and Bishop’s large, close-up photographs of a variety of spiders in their natural habitats and in his home!
During the first lesson, students discuss the key ideas and details and complete an “Idea Map” to summarize the information. They use their Idea Maps to write an informational paragraph about Spiders. When students revisit the text, they study vocabulary words and text features. They use this information to create their own labeled diagram, glossary, or illustrations with captions. The final lesson includes a study of the details from the photographs and text to describe key information. As a fun culminating activity, students create a spider web crayon resist.
Jasper is back again! Our students LOVE Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds so we knew Creepy Underwear would be a hit. This time, Jasper is creeped out again, except this time it’s his underwear, not the carrots. At first he thinks he is a brave bunny and wants a new pair of creepy underwear, but he quickly becomes afraid of the underwear and tries to get rid of them.
In the first lesson, students will recount how Jasper tried to get rid of the creepy underwear and what the creepy underwear did. For the second lesson, students discuss the point of view of Jasper and the point of view of the creepy underwear. This book is perfect because the point of view of the underwear isn’t obvious right away. During the final lesson we made comparisons to Creepy Carrots. (Check out our Creepy Carrots Interactive Read-aloud.)For the last activity students write what they would do if they were Jasper and create this cute Jasper craftivity to attach to their prompt. This activity makes a darling bulletin board!
This new Halloween book is sure to be a class favorite. Yukio is bothered by his little sister Kashi because she thinks she is a ninja just like him and copies everything he does. She copies the way he carves his pumpkin, his trick-or-treating route, and even his Halloween costume. Finally he gets so frustrated that he yells at her. You’ll have to read the story to see how Kashi plays a trick on Yukio and makes him realize just how ‘ninja’ she is. This story teaches about the importance of including others, family, and friendship.
After reading the story the first time, students make a story map which includes the characters, setting, problem, and solution. In the next lesson students dive deep into the “Old Scarecrow Rhyme” to understand the meaning. Finally, students write what they can do to include others by being ‘so ninja’ and they create their own Samurai Scarecrow to accompany the writing.
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