The Emperor’s Cool Clothes Interactive Read-Aloud

The Emperor's Cool Clothes Interactive Read-Aloud


The Emperor’s Cool Clothes Lesson Plans


‘The Emperor’s Cool Clothes’ is a new and modern retelling of the classic tale ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’. Lee Harper is a great author and illustrator. He turned this classic into a fun story that kids will love. His illustrations are bright and colorful with lots of fun finds hidden within them. Your students will love diving into this text and the illustrations, especially when they start to realize the story’s silly store names like Nordicstrom and Cold Navy.

My class always loves the first day of our read-alouds. They love trying to find things in the author’s craft or things hidden in the illustrations even before we dive deep into them during the next lessons. They have a hard time waiting for lesson 2 and 3!


I try to focus only on the key ideas during our first read, but it isn’t easy. Sometimes nothing can stop the students from noticing all the great things about the illustrations. They’ve been well trained! After reading the book the first time I asked them some text dependent questions about the key ideas and details from the story and then we complete a graphic organizer. For this story I chose a simple story map.


The second read (yes we read the same story more than once and the students LOVE it!) we study the author’s craft. As a class we discussed why the author chose to do certain things in the story like changing the store names to Norticstrom and Cold Navy. I love seeing how the students transfer these lessons into their own writing during writer’s workshop. After asking the craft and structure text dependent questions, we focused on the point of view of the characters for this particular read-aloud.



For the final lesson, we read the book a third time. This is probably the student’s favorite read because this is the day we look at illustrations and find the fun hidden things the illustrator did. This book does not disappoint! After asking the integration of knowledge and ideas text dependent questions (questions about the illustrations) we colored our own clothes for the emperor.


Then we extended our thinking as students wrote if they would tell the emperor the truth about his clothing. It is always interesting to read the student’s opinions. Most say they would tell him the truth. Sharing opinions is always a fun conversation for students. I let them share their opinions with each other using conversation chips. Learn more about conversation chips and other fun conversation strategies for younger kids here.




You will make your principal proud when you read-aloud if you follow these lesson plans. You can check out all of our other read-aloud lessons (we have over 100!) by clicking on the image below. 




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