Do Unto Otters Interactive Read-Aloud Centers Around Building Relationships
There are several themes to explore when thinking about back-to-school read-aloud lessons + activities. Stories centered around building relationships are a standard for a reason, as they help support building positive relationships in your own classroom. Stories that teach about growth mindset are also becoming more popular, as they help create a safe place for children to set goals and try new things.
Teach Manners and How We Treat Others with Do Unto Otters
Two other themes that we think are important to address at the beginning of the year are manners and how we treat others. In the end, teaching students about manners and how they treat others is truly a part of building positive relationships. They just address it from a different perspective than Getting to Know You Activities.
Do Unto Otters by Laurie Keller is a great book that addresses these themes, which is why we think it deserves to be added to your back to school read-aloud collection!
If you haven’t read this book before, Do Unto Otters is a story about manners that introduces students to the golden rule. Laurie Keller does a great job of engaging students in this important lesson by introducing it in a playful way, through her use of animals as characters.
The story is centered around Rabbit, who worries about how he will get along with his new neighbors, the Otters. Rabbit doesn’t know anything about otters. He has many questions like “will they get along?” and “will they be friends?” that lead him to seek answers from the wise Owl.
Do Unto Otters Read Aloud, Now Online!
The questions Rabbit asks Owl provide a great opportunity for you to present these questions to your students. Ask your students if they have ever felt the way Rabbit feels. Most likely, many of your students have similar worries about starting a new school year in a new classroom. Asking these questions allows you to be their wise owl!
You can guide your students in a discussion about how important everyone’s differences are; how each students’ differences makes the class special, and how important it is to respect everyone even if they are different from you!
In addition to this important lesson of how to treat others, this book also provides a great starting point for academic learning! One of the reasons we selected this title for a read-aloud is because of its close connection to the common core standards.
The theme of this book is timeless and we want the way you teach it to be timeless as well. Therefore, we updated this read-aloud to a digital form so you can teach it online – if you choose! We still love opportunities for traditional non-digital learning activities as well, just like many of you, so it is also available in a printable form!
Whatever format you choose – you still have access to ALL of the same amazing Do Unto Otter lesson plans!
Do Unto Otters Read Aloud Helps Facilitate Conversations with Your Students
As we mentioned earlier, this book allows for several great conversations with your students about treating “otters” the way they want to be treated. So we made sure to include activities in the read-aloud to support discussions.
The Do Unto Otter Read Aloud also includes a sorting activity, text-dependent questions, and a writing activity that asks students to further ponder how they want others to treat them and how they should treat others. One of our favorite things about teaching this book in our classrooms was the student responses! Their responses were always SO thoughtful and always amazed us!
In fact, we loved their responses so much we would always hang them on our bulletin boards with the final products of their cute otter craftivity! We highly encourage you to do something similar. Hanging students’ work in the classroom is a great way to remind them of lessons you learned in the book. It also is a great way to give students ownership of their learning space, which further develops a sense of belonging in their classroom! All things we truly believe will set you and your students up for an amazing year together!