Tag Archives: problem solving

Patches Lost and Found by Steven Kroll

Schema: pets, writing, a lost pet

Text-to-Self Connections: Challenges at school, trying to find a lost pet

Problem Solving: The main character loves to draw but has a hard time with creative writing. Her teacher challenges her to write a story instead of drawing pictures. Jenny’s pet guinea pig, Patches, is missing. She begins to draw pictures of what could have happened to him. After he is found, Jenny realizes that if she writes about her pictures in sequence that it would be a great story. This book may help students who struggle with what to write about. If they like to draw, they could write about their drawing. The story also shows how Jenny is using her imagination to write a fictional story about her pet being lost.

Compare and Contrast: what really happened to Patches vs. what Jenny imagined for her story

Oh No! by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann and Oh No, George! by Chris Haughton

Schema: When things don’t go right or the way we want them to go

Text-to-Text: Both books share the “oh, no!” phrase for similar reasons

Figurative Language: Fleming’s book adapts naturally to the song “Frog Went A-Courting” with rhyming words.

Problem Solving: Both stories have a problem that is solved with either self-control or help.

Predicting: With Oh No George! students can predict what George will do with each challenge.

There Is a Bird on Your Head! by Mo Willems

Schema: Tell me about times you have been upset because someone is bothering you in some way?

Text-to-self connections: Think about how you deal with someone bothering you.  Do you tell on them to someone else like your teacher or parent?

Metaphor: For older children, this book is a great example of metaphor.  The bird on Gerald’s  head is a metaphor for obstacles in our life.

Cause and Effect: Because the bird is on elephant’s head, the effect is that elephant is very unhappy.

Drawing Conclusions: Piggie draws the conclusion that Gerald could just ask the birds to leave.  This is such a simple solution to the problem, but one that many children and adults forget to do when we are bothered by others.

Predicting: What do you predict that Piggie will do after the birds put their nest on his head?

Sequencing: Discuss the sequence of the bird activities on Gerald’s head.

Synthesis: Tell about a problem you are having and what you might do to solve it.  What is someone is bothering you such as pushing you in the line?  What do you think Piggie would do?

Text-to-text connections: other Elephant and Piggie books