A Toad for Tuesday

A Toad for Tuesday by Russell E. Erickson: Review and Activities*This page contains affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy for more information.

The Book

Title: A Toad for Tuesday
Author: Russell E. Erickson
Age Range: 6-9
Grade Level: 2-4

A Toad for Tuesday was first published in 1974.  This is a short novel without chapter breaks, but an easy read for elementary kids.  The story begins with two frog brothers, Morton and Warton, enjoying a tasty meal in their warm underground home during winter.  Warton decides he wants to visit his Aunt Toolia and prepares himself with layers of clothes, a pack of food and some skis.  On the way he gets picked up by an owl who takes him back to his tree and tells Warton that he will eat him on Tuesday since it’s the owl’s birthday.  Warton has five days to plan an escape, but in the meantime befriends the cranky owl. Warton’s calm and friendly nature might just be enough to save his life!

My Thoughts

Another thrift store find for me, A Toad for Tuesday won me over with the cover!  This book moves swiftly and the message in the story is heartwarming.  Warton seems to take his fate with ease, engaging the owl in long conversations and tidying up the owl’s home.  What I really liked was that Warton appears to have no ulterior motives, but it is just in his nature to be kind and friendly.  He is able to deal with the unexpected turn of events in a calm manner and thinks carefully before acting.  Warton exhibits some wonderful character traits, such as bravery, kindness, cleanliness, friendliness, and flexibility.

Russell E. Erickson has written several more books in the series. See the list below for more of these fun reads!

  1. Warton and the Traders
  2. Warton and the Contest
  3. Warton and the King of the Skies
  4. Warton and Morton
  5. Warton’s Christmas Eve Adventure
  6. Warton and the Castaways


Resources for Teaching

Taylor-Made Tales: The Dog’s Secret

Taylor-Made Tales: The Dog's Secret by Ellen Miles - Review and Activities*This page contains affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy for more information.

The Book

Title: Taylor-Made Tales/The Dog’s Secret
Author: Ellen Miles
Age Range: 7-10 years
Grade Level: 2-5

Taylor-Made Tales/The Dog’s Secret is an easy read chapter book that blends two stories into one.  Cricket doesn’t want to be labeled “rambunctious” by the new teacher, Mr. Taylor, so she goes out of her way to follow rules and not stand out.  In fact, her whole class is hesitant about the new teacher, until Mr. Taylor engages them every afternoon in a story made up from items the kids had lost.  The story he tells is about a girl named Maisie and her dog Jack.  Jack is a very special dog with a secret talent and one day he disappears.  Maisie is afraid the secret is out and she will never see Jack again.

My Thoughts

I picked up this book at a local thrift store after checking the reviews for it on Amazon (you’ll find this is a very common thing for me to do!).  Apparently, there are several more in the series, all which tell different tales made up by Mr. Taylor and include five things chosen by the students.  The Dog’s Secret is a fun and light-hearted read.  Even though Maisie experiences loneliness and sadness over a missing pet, the situation is not traumatic for sensitive readers.

The chapters integrate both story lines of Cricket and Maisie seamlessly. Jack seems like that perfect dog companion that many kids dream of having growing up.  Themes of  patience, helpfulness, empathy, and acceptance can be found throughout the story. This is a must for any dog lover!


Resources for Teaching

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The Adventures of Johnny Chuck

Free Unit Study and Teaching Guide for The Adventures of Johnny Chuck: Lists of Activities and Resources

*This post contains affiliate links.  We receive a small commission when you purchase items through our site.  This helps support the website and enables us to continue providing you quality information and product recommendations.  Please read our disclosure policy for more information.

 

The Book: The Adventures of Johnny Chuck

The Adventures of Johnny Chuck written by Thornton W. Burgess was first published in 1913. In this story, Spring has arrived and after spending all winter hibernating, Johnny Chuck decides that he is dissatisfied with his home and sets out to find a new place to live. His search leads him to a run-in with another woodchuck on the Green Meadows, a snake, and a female chuck that gives him a new purpose for finding the perfect place to settle down.


Things to Talk About

  • What is a woodchuck?
  • What is a hyla (now called a Spring Peeper)?
  • How were the Green Meadow and Green Forest changing from winter to spring?
  • Have you ever heard a “laughing brook“?

Arts & Crafts

English & Reading

Science Exploration

Building Character

Extra Fun

Other Books To Read

⇒ Check out our Pinterest page for Johnny Chuck!

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Old Mother West Wind Unit Study

Free Old Mother West Wind Unit Study and Teaching Guide: Lists of Activities and Resources*This post contains affiliate links.  We receive a small commission when you purchase items through our site.  This helps support the website and enables us to continue providing you quality information and product recommendations.  Please read our disclosure policy for more information.

The Book: Old Mother West Wind

Old Mother West Wind was first published in 1910.  This wonderful collection of stories written by Thornton W. Burgess has been a favorite over generations. Old Mother West Wind introduces many animal characters that later became books of their own. This is just the beginning of tales about Peter Cottontail, Reddy Fox, Jerry Muskrat, Johnny Chuck, and many more!  In this book, Burgess tells us why Grandfather Frog has no tail, why Jimmy Skunk’s family was given stripes, how Spotty the Turtle wins a race, and so many more endearing stories about woodland creatures.

Dover Children’s Thrift Classics have a wonderful version for sale on Amazon.com.  I love adding these little books to my library.

This book is also in the public domain and available for free download HERE.

Things to Talk About

Arts & Crafts

Science Exploration

Math Skills

Building Character

Extra Fun

Other Books to Read

More Themed Play

⇒ Visit us on Pinterest for more ideas and crafts!

 

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