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Reading activities for My Father's Dragon
Old 12-30-2008, 02:49 PM
 
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Hello, I am looking to use My Father's Dragon for one of my reading groups. Does anyone have any units or activities they are willing to share? Thanks in advance.


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Old 12-30-2008, 02:55 PM
 
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I love this book!

In the past, I have made an outline map and let students fill in the journey.

We've made backpacks w/ manilla folders and strips of paper. Inside, we put index cards with things he brings on the blank side and a short summary (practicing summarizing skills) on the lined side.

I've also had students tell about the NEXT adventure with the dragon.
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My Father's Dragon is part of a trilogy
Old 12-30-2008, 03:33 PM
 
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I love this book, but if it weren't already a wonderful story the author has also written Elmer and the Dragon and Dragons of Blueland as her sequels to the original work. Thanks for stirring such happy memories---I must see what I can dream up for all three books as I know the students love the stories.
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Have some fun with. . .
Old 12-30-2008, 06:05 PM
 
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*journal or diary written by Elmer. . .a good way to practice summarizing and/or point of view.
*Readers' Theater for some of the chapters.
*newspaper interview with Elmer after he rescues the dragon.
*a list of 4-6 other items that Elmer could have brought in the knapsack.
*a news program interview with Elmer's mother/cat for practice with inference.
*a huge map of the island with a symbol/item from the knapsack on the location for each chapter.
*questioning the author as kids read each chapter.
*sketches by students as they visualize the characters based on the author's descriptions.

Happy reading!
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I LOVE these books!
Old 12-31-2008, 07:34 AM
 
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I, too, love the Elmer and the Dragon series. I read the trilogy to my classes every year. I also try to purchase the books (Scholastic usually has a three book pack or at least one of the books each year) and give them to all the students each year.
To show the importance of descriptive writing, I do not allow the children to see any of the pictures in the book when I read My Father's Dragon. After about the fourth chapter or so when the author has described the baby dragon (blue and yellow stripes, red on the bottom of his feet, golden wings and a red horn) I have the children draw the dragon. It's wonderful to see how their minds have painted a picture from the author's description.
To support math, I also have the kiddos keep track of how many tangerines Elmer has throughout his adventure on Wild Island. They have to remember from day to day how many he had left then do mental math to see how many he has left after eating so many or picking so many more.
When I read Elmer and the Dragon, Elmer and the baby dragon are on Feather Island. Elmer discovers that the baby dragon's favorite foods are skunk cabbage and marsh maragolds. These are both real plants which you can find pictures of and descriptions of on the internet.
In the Dragons of Blueland, you can again show the descriptive skills of the author by how Mrs. Gannett describes all the brothers, sisters and parents of Boris the dragon.
Overall, I absolutely love this triolgy. You can even use them at higher grades and show how our language has changed. The first book especially is rich is 1940ish verbage. Have fun with your kids!


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My Father's Dragon
Old 12-31-2008, 03:49 PM
 
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I have questions for each chapter that I have created but I can't post yet. If you'd like to see them you can e-mail me at gmpicot@comcast.net
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Great Book!
Old 12-31-2008, 05:59 PM
 
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As a culminating activity I have had my students create their own island first on paper and then we actually make them with salt-dough. After this they plan an adventure of their own and write their own island stories. They have to rescue something/someone, meet at least 5 characters along the way and have to have packed a backpack with items that will help sole the problem.

Also, I tie it in with geography and landforms and the islands have to include at least 4 different landforms.

It's time consuming, but the end results are wonderful!
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