Old Bear by Kevin Henkes

Old Bear by Kevin Henkes

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Publishing: Greenwillow Books, 2008

Description: Old Bear goes into hibernation for the winter and dreams of the spring, summer, autumn, and finally the winter. When he wakes up from his very long nap he walks into the spring day and realizes he isn’t dreaming. 

Programming: Students could have a worksheet divided into four sections-one for each season. They could have paper shapes that they have to place in one season or another, such as snow, or falling leaves. 

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Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes

Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes

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Publishing: Greenwillow Books, New York, 1996

Description: Lilly is a mouse with a lot of personality. She loves school, and she especially loves her teacher, Mr. Slinger. However, when Lilly brings her new purple purse that plays music when you open it, three quarters, and shiny sunglasses to school, she simply cannot keep quiet about them. Mr. Slinger takes the items until the end of the day, and Lilly, in a fit of rage, draws an angry cartoon about Mr. Slinger. She feels very bad for this after she discovers the nice note Mr. Slinger put in her purse, and not only apologizes, but doesn’t bother anyone with her trinkets.

Programming: This is a great story about why we have rules and why adults enforce them. Students could discuss other rules that have to be followed, and why. It might also be a good story to discuss what to do with anger and frustration, because Lilly does not have the right idea. I also like the idea of giving kids a purple purse outline to cut out and then pasting/drawing in items that are important to them.

Or they could make their own plastic purses! I found this using Pinterest:

http://creeksidelearning.com/2011/10/01/lillys-purple-plastic-purse-activities/

Owen by Kevin Henkes

Owen by Kevin Henkes

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Publishing: Greenwillow Books, New York, 1993

Description: Owen has a yellow blanket that he loves. When nosy neighbor Mrs. Tweezers tries to give Owen’s parents several ways to get rid of the blanket, Owen thwarts them all. Owen’s mother comes up with an idea that will make everyone happy.

Illustrations are done in different sized panels and fairly bright colors. The text is sufficient to tell a detailed story without being overwhelming on any pages.

Programming: Have students talk about their favorite object and why it is important to them. I also like the idea of character mapping Owen, found here: http://pinterest.com/pin/55521007876286411/

I am very intrigued by Kevin Henkes books and may choose to do him for a group author project, so there may be more Kevin Henkes to come!

Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes

Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes

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Publishing: Greenwillow Books, 2004

Awards: Caldecott Medal, ALA Notable Children’s Book, School Library Journal Best Book, Publisher’s Weekly Best Book

Description: This beautiful black and white book follows a curious little kitten as she tries to get a drink from what she thinks is a big bowl of milk in the sky. The black and white highlights the night-time setting. The illustrations are varied in size and have enough detail to be interesting, but are simplistic enough to be elegant.

Programming: This sounds like a good time to talk about the phases of the moon. It might to too complex to explain why the moon changes shape, depending on your audience, but I think the fact that at different times it looks different ways could be said. Then, I like this idea of using oreos to show the different phases. Plus, I’m always a fan of eating. 🙂

 

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