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Novel Unit - Dear Mr. Henshaw

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These are activities to use when teach the novel Dear Mr. Henshaw
"Dear Mr. Henshaw"
Posted by:Julia #36544

Hi Monica,
I teach 5th grade language arts and am just beginning to use literacy circles. My classes recently completed work with "Dear Mr. Henshaw". The following activity page was given to each student to complete. I hope you will find a few of these activities useful.

KNOWLEDGE: (complete each activity)

1. Recall details about the setting by creating a picture of where Leigh Botts and his mother lived.
2. Create a story line showing the progress of Leigh’s relationship with Mr. Henshaw. Be sure to have a minimum of 6 time markers.

COMPREHENSION: (complete each activity)

3. Explain how Leigh’s attitude changed over time about Mr. Henshaw’s questions.
4. Describe a typical day in the life of Leigh Botts.
5. Summarize pages 1-36.

SYNTHESIS: (choose one activity to complete)

6. Create a poster to advertise the...

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Posted by:jennifer #17325

Hi I teach Dear Mr. H every year.
--I have the kids keep a journal, just like Leigh keeps a diary in the book.
--have the kids write to famous authors of their choosing...have to get adresses from your librarian in school or in the town in which you live.
--In the story Leigh makes a lunch box alarm. I have the kids make alarms and explain to the class how they work.
--We keep track on a map of California where Leigh's Dad goes on his truck trips.
-- Another activity we do is write silly songs (poems)because in the story Leigh and his family sing silly songs in the car.
--Leigh goes to the butterfly trees when he is sad. I have the kids write about a place they like to go when they feel sad.
--We make stained glass...

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Dear Mr. Henshaw
Posted by:tiffany #47257

I have used this book during reading. I usually coincide it with letter writing in Language. Another idea is to pair your students with those of a younger grade, and have them write to one another in a "buddy journal" once a week. One journal would be for two students. (Example: 4th grader and 2nd grade have one journal with both of their names on it. 4th grader writes to 2nd grader. You deliver journal to 2nd grade teacher. 2nd grader writes back. Continues.) Also, this talks about a boy who doesn't see his father much, and his feelings about it. You could coincide it with "types of families" too.

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Dear Mr. Henshaw
Posted by:Mary #17326

Here is what I have on my list to try this year:

Simulate a road trip. Pretend you are a trucker, hauling a load of vegetables up the coast from San Diego to Crescent City, California. Using web sites check the weather and road conditions. Plot a course, keeping in mind the time, fuel, and speed limit constructions. Write a journal entry about the day’ travels.

Gather information and either write a short report of a poster telling about the monarch butterfly.

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Reading help for fourth grade
Posted by:Liz #47011

I taught fourth grade for 14 years, and am now teaching reading to third-fifth grade students in need of intervention. I always enjoyed teaching reading to fourth graders using novels. I suggest Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary. It is a perfect format for a response journal by the students as it is written as letters to an author by the main character, Leigh Botts. One finds out a lot about the students by reading and responding to these journals. I would usually give students prompts regarding what they should write to the main character, Leigh. These dealt with his many problems: moving to a new school, parents divorce, loss of a pet, etc. Believe it or not, the students provided much insight in their responses. As the teacher, I also found language arts "mini lesson" ideas from their writing.

Having the students discuss the novel in a...

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Dear Mr. Henshaw
Posted by:WebJunkie #136015

I am tinkering with the idea of Dear Mr. Henshaw to teach daily journaling for the year. Its a good easy read and there is a lot of discussion that the kids can relate to.... having a hard time thinking of topics for writing, divorce, social issues, etc...

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Cause and Effect
Posted by:Mrs. G #136016

This is a cause and effect activity that could be used with many novel units. It works well with Dear Mr. Henshaw.

Create two sets of sentence strips. One set with "causes" from the story and the other set with the "effects" to the cause you wrote. You will want to do enough strips so that every student gets either a cause or an effect. Pass out the strips to the students and tell them they have to find the person that has either the cause or the effect to their strip. Once they have found their match they should line up in the front of the room and when everyone has found their match you can lead a discussion and go over the answers orally to make sure the answers are correct.

For example on one sentence strip you would write. Someone keeps stealing Leigh's...

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Dear Mr. Henshaw
Posted by:Mrs. G #136018

After reading the book Dear Mr. Henshaw, have you students choose their favorite scene from the book. On a sheet on paper they should write a summary of the scene either at the top or bottom of the page. On the remaining part of the page they should illustrate and color the scene. You can have the students share these with the class and then display them on a bulletin board.

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Character Activity
Posted by:Mrs. G #1368

Have your students each choose a character from the story Dear Mr. Henshaw and complete the character analysis sheet that I have attached. To extend the activity they can illustrate the character or scene that the character is in.

Download: character Henshaw.doc (25.6 KB)
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