Category Archive: Book Units

Feb 27

Out of the Dust Lesson Plan

  Out of the Dust, written by Karen Hesse, uses verse to tell the story of Billie Jo Kelby’s life on a farm during the Dust Bowl years.   Lesson Plan/Art Project Step #1 ~ Observe Photos Display several photographs of dust storms approaching during the time of the Dust Bowl. Below are some examples. Step #2 ~ Compare …

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Feb 20

The Tales of Despereaux Character Trait Cards

  Despereaux is an unusual mouse. He loves reading books and has a huge imagination. One day, he goes to Princess Pea’s room and hears her father playing his guitar and singing. Despereaux talks to Princess Pea because he is so caught up in the music. When Princess Pea picks Despereaux up for a closer look, he …

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Feb 13

The Castle in the Attic

  William has used the magical Janus medal to shrink Mrs. Phillips, his beloved nanny, down to the size of his index finger. He thinks this is the only way to keep her from leaving him and returning to her home in England. William takes her to the attic to live in a magical toy castle. Sir Simon …

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Feb 06

The Whipping Boy Activities

  Prince Horace, nicknamed Prince Brat, constantly creates mischief. But because of the custom of the time, he does not receive punishment. A whipping boy steps in to receive the whipping. Prince Horace becomes bored with his circumstances, so he forces his whipping boy Jemmy to run away for a little adventure. The two are soon …

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Jan 30

The Cay Activities

  Set during World War II, The Cay tells the story of Phillip, an American from Virginia. While trying to return home from Curacao, Phillip’s ship is torpedoed by a German submarine. Phillip and Timothy find their way to a raft. After floating on the ocean for several days, they land on an island. Timothy says they …

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Jan 23

The City of Ember Book Activities

  The city of Ember is dying. Power failures become more frequent and longer. The sky is dark. Outside the city, darkness looms in the Unknown Regions. Lina Mayfleet finds a set of instructions she believes will help her find a way out of the city. Unfortunately, her baby sister finds the instructions first and chews holes …

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Jan 16

Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor Activities

  As Marty walks the hills of Friendly, West Virginia, he runs across a shy beagle pup. The pup follows him home. The two form an immediate friendship. Marty names the pup Shiloh after the place he finds him. He soon learns he must return the dog to its rightful owner, Judd Travers, who is unkind to …

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Jan 09

The Cricket in Times Square Teaching Activities

  The Cricket in Times Square tells the story of a cricket named Chester who is trapped in a picnic basket, travels on a commuter train from the Connecticut countryside, and ends up in Times Square. While in the city, he makes friends with a cat, mouse, and young boy. In this heart warming tale, …

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Jan 01

Where the Red Fern Grows – A Winter Mentor Text

  Welcome to the Reading Crew Winter Mentor Text Blog Linkup When thinking about a winter related book to use as a mentor text, I immediately thought of Where the Red Fern Grows. In the novel, Billy has to battle the winter weather in life and death situations twice. In Chapter 10, Little Ann falls …

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Dec 26

Free Teaching Resources to use with The Watsons Go to Birmingham – 1963

  Are you looking for some ideas to use with The Watsons Go to Birmingham? This post contains several free teaching resources. The Watsons Go to Birmingham reads almost like a diary detailing interesting events in the lives of what neighbors in Flint, Michigan call the “Weird Watsons.” The story is told from the perspective of …

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