We just finished our last "K-2 Book Adventure" of the school year and I realize I haven't posted any program summaries...maybe I'll catch up soon. For May we made it kind of a sneak preview of our Summer Reading Program, so we used the "Dig Into Reading" theme. Not the easiest topic for this program, but I think we made it work, picking five books that each have something to do with guys who dig.
We started with "Digging Dogs," and acted out a scene from one of my favorite early chapter book series: "Down Girl and Sit" by Lucy Nolan. Those books just crack me up; they're perfect for people who like dogs and who have a 2nd grade sense of humor, so no wonder. Though Down Girl and Sit do some digging in their books, we chose two funnier scenes to act out, both from Bad to the Bone. As "Ruff" (Down Girl's owner) I tell how Down Girl and Sit got their names, while Terri and Sheila (as DG and S) demonstrate by jumping up and down and not sitting. Then we did a scene where Down Girl drags her newly cleaned rug through the mud, so it will smell right again. Some good chasing there as the neighbor cat, Here Kitty Kitty, clings to the rug while Terri/Down Girl runs into the audience with the puppet cat trailing. We finished with the scene where the dogs grab Ruff's paint brush and get paint all over him ("now he will match the color of the house!") and eat Ruff's pizza. The scene has a nice conclusion where Ruff decides Down Girl needs to go to dog training classes, and DG thinks it's a good idea because "Ruff has a lot to learn."
Then we shifted to "Digging for Dinosaurs," featuring Prehistoric Actual Size by Steve Jenkins. For whole animal and projected them large on the screen, with a note on how close these are to actual size.
this we just showed a few of the very cool life-sized illustrations, including some fold-outs. The teeth of Giganatasaurus are especially nice. To supplement it, we scanned the thumbnails from the back of the book that show the
Next up was "Digging Worms," and we took the easy way out for this one. I just love the "Diary" books by Doreen Cronin and Harry Bliss, but could not think of anything we could do with Diary of a Worm that would be as good as the excellent Weston Woods film. So we showed that on the screen.
One of our goals for this program is to check out multiple copies of the books we feature, so we only choose stuff that's pretty widely available in our county. For "Digging Snakes," though, I went back to an old favorite: "The Snake," which is a story in Gwot: Horribly Funny Hairticklers by
George Mendoza. The book is long out of print (published in 1967, now $70+ on amazon), but I haven't had the chance to tell that story in a long time and decided I'd just take the opportunity. Basically a farmer slices a snake in two and it comes back the next day twice as big and that keeps happening...I know, sounds kind of weird, but it really is a great oral tale, just funny enough and just gross enough. Plus it works as a "stretch" if you have the kids stand up and "Thwack!" the snake each time.
We were planning on finishing with "Digging Rabbits" and using Tops and Bottoms by Janet Stevens. But a week or so before the event Sheila decided we just had to find a way to do Creepy Carrots, a recent Caldecott Honor book by Peter Brown. We've been really busy and Tops and Bottoms was going to be easy since we had done it before, but sometimes the lure of a cool new book is just too hard to resist....so this became our "Digging Rabbits" book instead. Details are in this separate post.