Friday, March 1, 2013

Freddie and the Fairy Post-Reading activities

I've reviewed this book before about 2 years ago. Click here for it. This time round, I'm adding an activity to complete the entire reading/literacy session which I did with a new group of children age 4 - 6 years old.

Read-aloud: Identify the rhyming words with the children, while going back and forth to help them remember what Freddie wished for and what Bessie Belle conjured up for him instead. It is also to get them into the flow of rhyming.

Activity: Create your own post-reading activity. I just did a simple one by asking them again what Freddie wished for; why the fairy kept getting it wrong; what were the 3 rules for Freddie - is it important for us to do that too? and so forth.

Art & literacy: Think of something you'd like to wish for when you see Bessie Belle and what she might conjure up if you didn't say it properly. Draw.

Some interesting ones my kids came up with:
1) School - Tool
2) Baby shark - Mark on his face
3) Toy - toys 
4) Hat - bat

They had fun doing it because they thought it was pretty hilarious when they came up with the 'wrong' wishes :) Hope you'll have fun with this too!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons

Title/Author:  Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons / Eric Litwin (writer), James Dean (illustrator)
Publisher: Harper
Pages: 40 pages
ISBN: 978-0-06-211058-9
Ages: 4 - 7

In a nutshell
Pete the Cat wore his bright yellow new shirt which had four totally colorful, groovy buttons. But it fell off one by one! However, that didn't bother Pete at all. He said, buttons come buttons go, and kept on singing his song, until he was left with one last button - his belly button! :)

What I liked
EVERYTHING! It's such a simple, straight-forward story, yet my kids (4-5 year olds) in school enjoyed it immensely! They not only loved the story but also the bright, beautiful illustrations. I was quite surprised they loved the book. I guess that's how all children's books should be written - clear storyline, straight-forward & simple; basically KISS - (my definition: Keep It Simple & Straight-Forward)

How I read/presented it
1) Get the children interested in the story: I asked them if they've ever lost anything. How did they feel about it? Then weave in Pete the Cat and ask them how do you think he felt when he started losing his groovy buttons? What do you think he did?

2) Pete has this really cool-nonchalant look. Use this to add character to this story. After losing the first button, one of my students asked me, "Why does Pete have that look on his face? He just lost a button!" I just said, "Well, that's coz Pete's a cool cat! Guess what he did after losing this button?" Have the children guessing the outcome. Some even said, he's gonna get a new shirt! Some said, he's gonna cry.

3) I animated the story and gave it 'life.' I kinda animated Pete and imitated his nonchalant look. I asked my students to try it too. They had so much fun doing it.

4) Added some words of my own to give Pete more 'character'.

5) Encouraged involvement and participation. I sorta 'created' my own tune for Pete's song in this story and invited the children to sing along with me. And each time Pete loses his button, I asked the kids guess what Pete will do next/how do you think he'll react? This way, it'll make this simple story, more interesting.

Most importantly, get the children involved in the story. It'd make story time so much more fun!

You could turn this into a great storytelling session too! Just use your imagination and you'll have so much fun telling and dramatizing it; yes, even without the book :) I might try doing this when I get the chance :)

After that we had an art & craft session. We made our very own cats! :) This one's made by yours truly hehe Found the idea here


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