"Where would my tongue go?"
The Book: If You Hopped Like a Frog by David M. Schwartz
I'm a sucker for a good picture book that I can tie to a lesson. But this one? Wow! The connections are amazing. Need a book for introducing ratios and proportions- look no farther! Did you know that a chameleon's tongue is 1/2 the length of it's body? Or that a pelican could hold 3 gallons of liquid in it's pouch? Need a book with figurative language? "If you were as strong as an ant, you could lift a car." Need a book with alliteration? "..you would have been a towering tot, taller than mountain tops."
So picture this:
A group of first graders standing in the library. Each one sticking out their tongues. (We're pretending to be chameleons). I asked each one to touch their belly buttons- and imagine if their tongue was that long. (I know not quite 1/2 the body, but hey work with me). And then it happened, "I wonder where my tongue would go when it wasn't sticking out?"
Kids have a sense of wonder. A sense of curiosity. A natural want to learn. We as teachers have to tap into that - to help them discover what they want to know, and to understand that wondering is thinking and learning and growing.
So how can a classroom teacher tap into this? Read the book and ask questions: If you could have any of the characteristics in this book- which one would you want to have and why? How would you use it? Go write in your journal and tell me. Future lesson: investigate an attribute of an animal of your choice. What super-cool strength or talent does it have, and if you had that how would you use it?