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

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

Specific Novel & Picture Book Activities - "T"


There's Something in My Attic

by Mercer Mayer

readability kindergarten, readaloud kindergarten

A little girl hears a nightmare in the attic of her newly moved in country home. Her parents don't believe her, so she decides to capture it alone. This charming, easy to read book reminds children that they can be powerful too. Children don't always need their parents to conquer their fears or read books.

What is in the attic?

  1. Before reading this book to the class, draw and cut out triangles out of construction paper. This will be an attic. In the middle of the base of the triangle cut out a rectangle, but not all the way, just two snips. It should look like a door opened.
  2. Paste the attic onto a piece of paper with the door left opened.
  3. When reading aloud this book, stop before the nightmare is revealed.
  4. Ask students to draw a picture, inside the open door, of what they think is in the attic.
  5. Colour in the attic.
  6. Finish the story.


Through Grandpa's Eyes

by Patricia MacLachlan

Readability grade 3, read aloud grade 1

This story is about the bond that develops between John and his blind grandfather. John has learned to see through his grandpa's eyes, using his imagination and his memory of sights, sounds, smells and textures. Patricia MacLahalan has been successful in writing a comforting book with a message that readers of all ages can understand.

Using all your senses but sight:

  1. Teacher develop centres based on senses:
    • hearing (tapes of sounds)
    • tasting (variety of strong tasting foods)
    • smelling (variety of strong smelling foods)
    • touching (variety of objects)
  2. Students progress through each station while wearing blind folds and try to guess what they are hearing, tasting, smelling, or touching.


Tops & Bottoms

by Janet Stevens

read aloud kindergarten, readability grade 2

This is a story about a Bear, who has lots of money and is very lazy; and the Hare family, who are hard workers and very poor. Predicting even harder times, Mr. Hare asks Bear for half of his crops if him and his family handles the labour. Time and time again, the Hare family tricks Bear and come out winning in the end. Tops and Bottoms is beautiful and uniquely illustrated book that children will want to read over and over.

Make a tops and bottoms book.

This book is illustrated and written top to bottom of instead of side to side. If you are doing a vegetable and/or a seed unit, this would be a perfect book to use. Ask children to fold an 8-1/2 x 11 piece of paper in half. On the top draw how a vegetable looks above ground. On the bottom draw how the vegetable look underground. Repeat the process for four more vegetables. Cut each paper in half and bind together with staples so that when you open the book you can see how a different vegetable looks above and underground each time you turn a page.


Town Mouse Country Mouse

by Jan Brett

Readability grade 2, read aloud grade 1

A town mouse and a country mouse decide to switch houses with each other, each believing that they received the better part of the bargain. As soon as they arrive at their new homes both mice realize that the homes that they left behind are the ones that are the best for them. A charming story with beautiful illustrations that emphasizes to appreciate what we have. The grass isn't always greener on the other side of the fence.

Find a class in a community that differs from yours. Ask them to be penpals with your class. Through the letters, focus on the community characteristics. At the end of the year, make a chart comparing the similarities and differences between the communities.



by Jon Scieszka

Another book in the Time Warp Trio series by Jon Scieszka. This time Fred, Sam, and Joe end up in a frightening journey to the future. With robots with ray-guns 3-D advertisements chasing you wherever you go, these boys decide that the future is an age that they can wait for. An excellent book to read aloud or recommend to early intermediate children. It's suspenseful, creative, and thought-provoking.

  1. Pick an age that you would like to go to in the future or the past.
  2. Gather, create items that existed or you think will exist in the age that you chose.
  3. Write a paragraph on what you think it would be like to live in that age.
  4. Make a display out of these items.