Saturday, October 2, 2010

Mem Fox Innovation

We started our study of Mem Fox this week by reading her delightful night time story, Time for Bed. In hopes of bridging the curriculum from pattern books to Mem Fox we chose a Mem Fox book that is a pattern book. The children loved this lyrical repetitive book about night time animals going to sleep. Next we decided to take a look at Mem's pattern and write a similar pattern of our own. The children decided instead of writing about going to bed, they would choose a pattern about waking up and since our theme this year is the farm, they wanted to have the animals wake up on the farm. Next we brainstormed all the farm animals we could name. The children divided into partners and each partnership chose one of the animals from the chart. The children decided on the pattern, Good morning little ____, little ____. Next the partners brainstormed all of the real words that they could think of that rhymed with their animal name. Each group wrote a rhyming sentence to complete the couplet. Since this book was going to be a story that all the children would read, the teachers opted to type the couplets with corrected spelling and punctuation.

The second day of this two day project, the teachers talked about matching the words to the pictures before the children went off to illustrate their rhyming couplet. After the pictures were complete, the children came back together to talk about an ending for their book and to illustrate the final page. What a delightful way to begin an author study - by adapting the writer's style to a class story!

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