www.canteach.ca Elementary Resources | Links | Submit | About

Home > Elementary Resources > English Language Arts > Novel & Picture Book Activities

Specific Novel & Picture Book Activities - "H"


A Handful of Time

by Kit Pearson

readability, grade 5, read aloud grade 4


Patricia is about to have a summer that she will never forget, even though she is less than enthused when it begins. Her mother and father are sending her away to her cousin's cottage, which used to be an annual summer destination for her mother when she was young. When Patricia arrives at the cottage, her apprehensions come true; she doesn't feel like she belongs and her aunt and uncle overwhelm her with pampering. The summer is saved, though, when Patricia finds an old pocket watch. Suddenly is whisked back into time to when her mother was her age and experiences an exhilarating adventure and personal growth.

A few themes covered in this novel are growing up, sibling rivalry, family relations, individuality, and dealing with divorce...


  1. Interview an adult, preferably a parent.
  2. Ask them to describe a time in their childhood that was very meaningful and full of personal growth.
  3. Take notes throughout the interview and/or take notes.
  4. Put yourself into that same time / experience. How does it feel? What do you see?
  5. Write out the experience as though you are watching it happen.


Hands, Hands, Hands

by Marcia Vaughan

read aloudkindergarten, readability kindergarten

Marcia Vaughn playfully describes many things that hands can do in this rhyming story. One thing that I appreciated was that all of the activities were positive ones like hugging and helping. It would be a good book to use with a kindergarten class that has a "hand problem"!

What can hands do?:

  1. Brainstorm all the good things that hands can do and write them on a chart.
  2. Brainstorm all the bad things that hands can do and write them on a chart.
  3. Have chldren choose to good things and two bad things off the lists and draw pictures with them. Under each picture fill in the sentence "Hands can.......and......, but shouldn't....... or .....
  4. Display them around the classroom as "reminders".


Harriet's Recital

by Nancy Carlson

Read aloud Kindergarten, Readability Grade one

Harriet loves to go to ballet class, but she hates recitals. For most of the book Harriet worries about everything that could possibly go wrong during her upcoming recital. Finally, on the night of the recital, she takes a deep breath and overcomes her fears. This book presents a universal theme that many of us can relate to, and good to share with apprehensive children.


On a piece of paper, draw a time that you were nervous. What happened? Have a class discussion of various times that people feel nervous.


Henry's Moon

by Geoffrey Moss

readability grade 2, read aloud kindergarten

Henry lives in a big city, and he hardly ever gets to see the moon; the smog, big people and crowds prevent it almost every night. So, from what he's heard about the moon and seen he builds a moon for his bedroom window. Every night, Henry turns on his moon so that it's light can shine on him while he sleeps. When Henry's friends in the country hear about this contraption, they invite him to visit and see a real moon.A cute story that teaches that we all have our own preferences and everyone's different.

Make a moon for your own window.

  1. Cut a circular frame out of black construction paper. Punch a hole through the top.
  2. Cut out a circle from a piece of yellow crepe/tissue paper just bigger than the inside circle of the frame.
  3. Paste the circle on the frame.
  4. Tie a string through the hole, making a loop.
  5. Hang in your window.