Tag Archives: animals

Clink clank clunk!

Bibliographic Information: Aroner, Miriam. (2006). Clink clank clunk!. Honesdale, Pennsylvania: Boyds Mills Press.

Plot Description: As Rabbit drives to town one day, he sees many friends along the way. First there is Mole, who pops up from his hole to ask for a ride. Then they see Squirrel who trades a berry for a ride. Next it is Porcupine who is going into town for a quill trim. As each animal joins the car pool, Rabbit’s old car makes different noises that show there may be trouble. Next they pick up Possum as the car hisses and fizzles. Followed by Beaver, Crow and Skunk, who is warned he will be kicked out if he sprays. The car countinues to make more noises: tucka, tucka, thunk! The final two passengers are Fox and Cow. Clankity, clunk, boom! The car breaks down and the friends must work together to get it to town. Rabbit’s car is a wreck. How will they get home?

Quantitative Reading Level: Lexile Measure: N/A Interest Level: Lower Grades ATOS Book Level: 2

Qualitative Reading Analysis: The story features figurative language. Each time a new animal gets in for a ride, the car makes new noises, which are onomatopoeia. Organization is chronological, sequential and conventional. Transitions lead the reader through the story. There is a pattern young readers will be able to follow and use to predict the sequence of events. The majority of the pages start with an animal being spotted along the road to town and asking for a ride. The opposite page features figurative language (onomatopoeia) of the sounds the car is making as it slowly breaks down. Text features organize the information and guide the reader. For example, all the sounds the car makes are in a different font than the rest of the text, as well as being a larger font size and bolded. The last sound on each page is in a different color than the rest of the story, with the exception of the first letter of the text on the opposite page, which is also large and the same color. So the first letter and the last word of the two page layout are matching in color. Counting is also reinforced in the story each time a new animal gets in the car the number of passengers is stated.

Content Area: Reading, Literature

Content Area Standard:

English Language Arts Standards for Reading: Literature: Craft and Structure: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.6 Acknowledge differences in the points of view of characters, including by speaking in a different voice for each character when reading dialogue aloud.

English Language Arts Standards for Reading: Literature: Craft and Structure: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.4 Describe how words and phrases (e.g., regular beats, alliteration, rhymes, repeated lines) supply rhythm and meaning in a story, poem, or song.

English Language Arts Standards for Reading: Foundational Skills: Fluency: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.2.4.b Read grade-level text orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings.

Curriculum Suggestions: After the teacher has read the story aloud have students take turns reading the lines of the different animals using expression, tone and rhythm. Teach students about figurative language and in particular onomatopoeia and have them find as many examples as they can from the text. Ask students how the author uses rhythm and figurative language to convey meaning. Have students write their own short story or sentences using onomatopoeia.

Supporting Digital Content:


Character names/descriptions: Rabbit is a friendly animal, whose old car is a means of transport for all the animals he meets on his way to town.

Personal Thoughts: I think kids will enjoy the onomatopoeia sounds and there is a message of generosity, as Rabbit gives everyone a ride and working together as the animals team up to get Rabbit’s car to town.

High interest annotation: Rabbit drives his clunker car to town and picks up all his animal friends along the way, but as they drive along the car makes mysterious noises: clink, clank, clunk!

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Filed under Reading For Pleasure (Picture Books)

Fantastic Mr. Fox

Bibliographic Information: Dahl, Roald. (2007). Fantastic Mr. Fox. New York: Puffin Books.

Plot Description: Mr. Fox lives a happy life, in his hole with Mrs. Fox and their four young foxes. Mr. Fox provides for his family by stealing chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys from the three rich, nasty farmers in the valley. The farmers all know Mr. Fox is the one who has been stealing from them, so they decide to team up to catch him and end his stealing once and for all. In their first attempt Mr. Fox loses his lovely tail, but he won’t be caught off guard a second time. The farmers get tired of waiting for Mr. Fox to come back out of his hole, so they try to dig down to it, but they are no match for the Fox family who just digs deeper. So the farmers get their machines to try to out dig the foxes, but still to no avail. Just when it seems the foxes may starve in their hole, Mr. Fox has a brilliant idea to save the day.

Quantitative Reading Level: Lexile Measure: 600L Interest Level: Middle Grades ATOS Book Level: 4.1

Qualitative Reading Analysis: Organization is clear and chronological. Illustrations directly support understanding of text, though they are not necessary for comprehension, For example, ‘this is what happened to the hill,’ (p.27) is followed by an illustration of what the hill looked like, but the sentences after the picture describe the hill being like a crater, so the illustrations are not needed, but certainly enhance the readers experience. The author uses figurative language, such as alliteration, for example: Fantastic Mr. Fox. Sentences are mostly simple and compound in construction. Vocabulary is familiar and conversational. Language closely adheres to the reader’s linguistic base. There are multiple levels of meaning and themes, some of which are clearly stated and others of which are implied and require more in-depth consideration. The story is told by a third person narrator who is reliable and provides appropriate levels of detail. The text presents situations that will be unfamiliar to the reader, but not difficult for the reader to understand. Students may connect with the animals decision to work together for mutual benefit.

Content Area: Reading, Literature

Content Area Standard:

English Language Arts Standards for Reading: Literature: Key Ideas and Details: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.1Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.

English Language Arts Standards: Language: Vocabulary Acquisition and Use: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.5 Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.

English Language Arts Standards: Language: Vocabulary Acquisition and Use: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.5.a Interpret figurative language, including similes and metaphors, in context.

Curriculum Suggestions: Have students design a new machine that could help the farmers catch Mr. Fox. Create a new tail for Mr. Fox. Have students research the impact of heavy digging machinery of environments and wildlife. Have students predict or suggest possible solutions for the Fox family’s problems. Do you agree with Mrs. Fox that Mr. Fox is fantastic? Use supporting details from the book to justify your answer. Have students make an alliteration using their name and an adjective to describe themselves. Come up with adjectives to describe various characters in the story and see if you can make an alliteration, for example, Rude Rat.

Supporting Digital Content:




Awards: Bilby Award

Character names/descriptions: Mr. Fox, the family man (fox) and sly thief. Farmer Boggis is the enormously fat chicken farmer, Farmer Bunce is the potbellied dwarf duck and goose farmer and Farmer Bean, the pencil thin alcoholic turkey and apple farmer. All three farmers are rich and nasty.

Personal Thoughts: I particularly like the illustrations in this book and the simple story that has multiple layers of meaning.

High interest annotation: Three nasty farmers set out to catch Mr. Fox, the thief who keeps stealing from their farms, but Mr. Fox is too clever for them.

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Filed under Reading For Pleasure (Chapter Books)