Marsha Wilson Chall

Marsha Wilson Chall

Reading: a Family Tradition

Pre­pared by the I Love to Read com­mit­tee at Pinecrest Ele­men­tary School, Hast­ings, Min­neso­ta: Mari­ta Legreid, Jane Richards, Tere Kranz, Glen­da Peak, Nan­cy Dan­nek­er, Pat Schultz, Sharon Brown, Jane Har­ris, and Nan­cy Techam

This year our I Love to Read cel­e­bra­tion in Dis­trict 200 will focus on Mar­sha Wil­son Chall. Since Mar­sha will vis­it our ele­men­tary schools in Jan­u­ary and Feb­ru­ary, this inte­gra­tion of Author Day activ­i­ties and I Love to Read activ­i­ties is a nat­ur­al con­sol­i­da­tion. Com­bin­ing the activ­i­ties will ease teacher work­load and more thor­ough­ly pre­pare our stu­dents for Author Day, or extend activ­i­ties after the author vis­it.

Many of the books writ­ten by Mar­sha Wil­son Chall focus on fam­i­ly activ­i­ties and cel­e­bra­tions. There­fore, the theme for this year’s Dis­trict 200 I Love to Read cel­e­bra­tion is Read­ing: A Fam­i­ly Tra­di­tion (Shar­ing the books of Mar­sha Wil­son Chall). The media spe­cial­ist in each build­ing will be pro­vid­ing you with infor­ma­tion regard­ing the books that will be for sale and specifics for Mar­sha’s vis­it to your building.

Family reading

The fol­low­ing ideas, activ­i­ties, and expec­ta­tions were devel­oped by the Dis­trict 200 I Love to Read Com­mit­tee. We have attempt­ed to pro­vide ideas that are devel­op­men­tal­ly appro­pri­ate for var­i­ous grade lev­els. Please choose what works best for you.

Happy Birthday, America!

  • Teach the Fifty-Nifty Unit­ed States song. See your build­ing I Love to Read Com­mit­tee mem­ber or music teacher for more infor­ma­tion about this song.
  • Put states in alpha­bet­i­cal order and make up a chant or a rap depict­ing one of the best qual­i­ties of each state.
  • Use a map to iden­ti­fy each state.
  • Writ­ing Con­nec­tion: Have the class indi­vid­u­al­ly or as a group make up a new fam­i­ly tra­di­tion for the Fourth of July.
  • Writ­ing Activ­i­ty: Cre­ate an Amer­i­can flag. On each stripe have a stu­dent write a sen­tence or two about a Fourth of July mem­o­ry they have or a tra­di­tion their fam­i­ly observes. Using both sides of the flag would allow for 26 mem­o­ries or traditions.
  • Divide a cir­cle into four or six parts and draw what they do on the Fourth of July.
  • Make a tachis­to­scope show­ing four activ­i­ties that were depict­ed in the book.
  • Cre­ate a Fourth of July sum­mer pic­nic menu. Have a pic­nic in your classroom.
Happy Birthday, America!

Up North at the Cabin

  • Dis­cus­sion of the metaphors and sim­i­les found in the sto­ry. This fits well with the teach­ing of word choice. Have stu­dents cre­ate metaphors and sim­i­les.
    Writ­ing Activ­i­ty: Cre­ate a pat­tern book using the idea of Up North at the Cab­in; for exam­ple, Down South at the Beach.
  • Class Book: Cre­ate a class book using the pat­tern … We took a trip to a cab­in. Each child would cre­ate a page telling what they would take and what they would do.
  • Art Con­nec­tion: Cre­ate a page with a water­col­or back­ground. Each stu­dents would use this page to write the final copy about one of their vaca­tion experiences.
Up North at the Cabin

Sugarbush Spring

  • Dis­cus­sion of the metaphors and sim­i­les found in the sto­ry. This fits well with the Do a taste test. Con­trast real maple syrup with maple syrup such as Mrs. But­ter­worth’s. Graph the results of the taste test.
  • Then/Now Brain­storm­ing: Brain­storm how dif­fer­ent life was at the time Sug­ar­bush Spring took place and now.
  • Con­nect to the chap­ter “The Sug­ar Snow” from Lit­tle House in the Big Woods by Lau­ra Ingalls Wilder.
  • Have old­er rel­a­tives come in to talk about tra­di­tions and life many years ago.
  • Go to Car­pen­ter’s [or a local maple syrup oper­a­tion] dur­ing maple syrup time or have some­one from Car­pen­ter’s come to your class­room to do a demon­stra­tion. Many fifth grade class­es vis­it Car­pen­ter’s for maple syrup­ing, so please check on this before mak­ing arrange­ments. Car­pen­ter’s would come to the school to do a demon­stra­tion for $75 per hour. They would do a grade lev­el at a time. Please check with your build­ing prin­ci­pal to see if there would be funds for this.

Overall Ideas (some may be building-wide)

  • Web­site for Mar­sha Wil­son Chall:
  • Each fam­i­ly will receive a note regard­ing our I Love to Read Cel­e­bra­tion and a Feb­ru­ary cal­en­dar list­ing a fam­i­ly activ­i­ty for each day.
  • Books and Break­fast: Have par­ents come in before school to read with their chil­dren while they share a break­fast treat. This could be done school-wide or with dif­fer­ent grade lev­els meet­ing on dif­fer­ent days. One thing to con­sid­er in these tight bud­get times is how the break­fast treat would be paid for.
    After all books have been shared vote for your favorite book and then graph the results.
  • Write let­ters (class or indi­vid­ual) to the author.
  • Sit and Read: Pro­vide a chair of some sort (rock­ing, lawn, etc.) or a boat. Be sure a stu­dent or staff mem­ber is always sit­ting in the chair and read­ing dur­ing the month of Feb­ru­ary. This could be placed in the media cen­ter or a promi­nent place in the hall­way near the office.
  • Stu­dent of the Day: The stu­dent of the day is giv­en a bell to ring. When­ev­er they ring the bell, the class would take a few min­utes for a sto­ry or poet­ry break.
  • There are many oth­er ideas that have been used in the past that you may want to incor­po­rate into your cel­e­bra­tion such as: guest read­ers (school-wide or in indi­vid­ual class­rooms), Read Me Day, News­pa­per Scav­enger Hunts, etc.

The ideas that have been pro­vid­ed were meant as a spring­board for the many won­der­ful ideas each of you may have. Pick and choose what will work for your class or school.

We hope you have a won­der­ful Author Day and I Love to Read Cel­e­bra­tion dur­ing Jan­u­ary and February.