Let’s Celebrate Patricia Polacco!

I just read that award-winning children’s book author/illustrator Patricia Polacco  celebrated a birthday yesterday.  Her beautifully written AND illustrated stories have served as such inspiration in my teaching and my own writing.  I’ve oftentimes just sat with her books reading them over and over, enjoying word after word.  She’s an amazing artist.

I couldn’t choose just one of her many wonderful stories, so I decided to celebrate with a birthweek instead of a birthday.

Today’s book is Thundercake.  In this story, a grandmother helps her granddaughter overcome her fear of thunderstorms by baking a cake. 

Teaching Idea:  Sequencing

Explore kid-friendly cookbooks and discuss the importance of following recipe directions. 

What would happen if you skipped an ingredient?

What would happen if you started at the end of the recipe instead of from the beginning?

Compare following a recipe to cooking up a story.  Discuss a story’s ingredients (characters, setting, plot) and its directions (beginning, middle, and end).

Ways to Celebrate Thundercake:

  • Use the recipe found in the book and bake ahead, allowing your students to sample some of Grandma’s thunder cake.
  • Find a simple no-bake recipe your students can follow and celebrate with your own class-made treat. 
  • Create a class cookbook–this would be a great gift for parents!
  • Write sequencing stories/instructions on how to complete simple tasks (tying shoes, blowing bubbles,etc.)

Check back as I share more of Patricia Polacco’s great books and writing ideas throughout the week.  Happy Birthweek, Patricia!


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