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Specific Novel & Picture Book Activities - "P"


The Pig in the Pond

by Martin Waddell

read aloud, readability grade one

It is a hot, dry day on Nelligan's farm and a pig envies the ducks in the cool pond. Pigs can't swim, so the poor pig suffers as it gets hotter and hotter. Finally he cannot take it anymore and, much to everyone's surprise, he takes the plunge. This is a hilarious story with hilarious illustrations, that my class loved. It is easy to read, and the repetitions make it easy for classes to read along together.

The Pig in the Pond Bulletin Board Display


Pigs Aplenty, Pigs Galore

by David McPhail

Readability:grade one, Read Aloud: K

David McPhail presents a poetic look at what would happen if pigs took over your house. He has pigs aplenty, and just when he thinks he's had enough, MORE pigs appear to party and play. The silly situation is resolved and his temper cooled, though, when cleanup time comes and everyone helps. They all then rest their heads to have dreams of pigs galore.



Pumpkin Pumpkin

by Jeanne Titherington

read aloud kindergaren, readability grade one

Jamie plants a pumpkin seed and it grows and grows really big. In the fall, Jamie harvests it and carves it into a jack-o'lantern for Halloween, but he makes sure that he saves six seeds so that he can plant them in the spring. This book is a simple book to read during Halloween or even for a seed unit because it emphasizes the cyclical nature of plants. It also has beautiful illustrations that capture the feelings of spring, summer, and fall.

Pumpkin Math

  1. Display a real pumpkin. Have students estimate the number of vertical lines on the pumpkin, and record their estimations on chart paper.
  2. Count all of the lines with the class and record this 'actual' amount. Whose estimation was most accurate?
  3. Trace your finger around the circumference of the pumpkin, and explain that this is the circumference.
  4. Label the pieces of paper with the titles "too short", "just right" and "too long".
  5. Get children to cut a piece of string based on their estimate of what will be necessary to go around the pumpkin.
  6. Have each child come up with their piece of string and let them try to wrap it around the pumpkin.
  7. Place a piece of tape on the end of their string, and let them tape it to the appropriate paper- "too short"...
  8. Cut out the top of the pumpkin and have students come up, look inside, and estimate how many seeds are in it.
  9. Record estimations.
  10. Gut pumpkin, dry out seeds, and count them the next day with the class. Whose estimate was the closest?
  11. Roast some of the seeds with butter and eat, but remember to save some so that you can plant them in the classroom in the spring time.


Purple Hair? I Don't Care!

by Dianne Young

readability 2, read aloud kindergarten

A whole town is surprised to overhear that there's a baby in Mrs. Della Ragon's belly that has purple hair, and many other odd characteristics. But, Mrs. Della Ragon will love her baby no matter what. This book became a such a favourite of my class that by the end of the year they were able to recite it without looking at the words! The repetition and rhythm of this book is wonderful for beginning readers and the surprise ending still is a surprise no matter how many times you read it.

  1. Read aloud the book.
  2. Before you get to the last page where the surprise is revealed, ask your students to draw a picture of how they think Mrs. Della Ragon's baby will look like considering the clues they were given.
  3. Compare all of the drawings, are they accurate to the clues?
  4. Read the last page, was any one close?