Sunday, May 13, 2012

There's No Such Thing As A Dragon by Jack Kent - Teaching Ideas

Billy wakes up one morning to find a little dragon in his bedroom. He runs downstairs to tell his mother and she tells him that there is no such thing as a dragon. Billy of course believes his mom, even though he is staring at this little dragon. Because Bill sees this little dragon he keeps insisting that there is a dragon and his mother keeps insisting that there isn't. The more the mother insists the bigger the dragon grow, until finally it sticks out both ends of the house. Will Billy's mother ever recognize that there is a dragon in the middle of their house?

This is a fun story to read out loud with many opportunities to teach and review those reading skills and strategies you have covered throughout the year. The following is a list of skills and strategies that work great with this book and I have also included an Author's Purpose activity to go with it {if you downloaded my Author's Purpose posters already this will give you the opportunity to pull them out and use them}.

Reading level: 2.75
Theme: imagination
Genre: fantasy

Suggested Vocabulary: resist, patted

Reading skills and strategies:
  • asking questions - {possible questions at before}Why is the book called There's No Such Thing As Dragons when there is a dragon on the cover? Why is there a dragon in the house? How did the dragon get into the house? {possible questions during} Why can't the mother see the dragon? Why is the dragon getting so big? Where did the dragon come from? {possible questions at end}Are they going to keep the dragon? What will they name the dragon?
  • author's point of view - 3rd person point of view
  • author's purpose - entertain {evidence} there really is no such thing as dragons. Dragons cannot grow that fast. A dragon cannot lift a house and walk around with it on its back.
  • beginning, middle, end - {most important event from beginning} Billy finds a dragon in his room and his mother tells him there is no such thing as dragons. {most important event from middle} The dragon grows so big its head sticks out the front door and its tail sticks out the back door. {most important event from end} Mother finally admits that there is a dragon.
  • cause and effect - Why did Billy not pet the dragon? because his mother said there was no such thing as a dragon. Why did the dragon chase the bakery truck? because when it woke up from its nap it was hungry. Why did father have to go look for the house? because when the dragon ran after the bakery truck it took the house with him. Why did the dragon get small again? because the mother finally recognized that the dragon was there.
  • characterization - describe Billy, describe the dragon {looks like, feelings, thoughts, character}
  • compare & contrast - your dog or cat and the dragon
  • drawing conclusions & inferencing - Why do you think the dragon grew so big? {text clues} It ate a lot of pancakes. Every time mother said there is no such thing as a dragon the dragon got a little bit bigger {you might need to point this out as you are reading, it is not obvious}. {what I know} If someone doesn't see me I start to talk more or get louder in what I am doing. {my conclusion} The dragon got bigger because the mother did recognize him and he was trying to have her see him.
  • plot - the turning point in the story is when the mother recognized that the dragon was there.
  • predict - Where do you think the dragon came from? Why do you think the dragon is growing so big? Do you think the mom sees the dragon? Do you think they will keep the dragon?
  • problem & solution - {problem} The problem is that Billy sees a dragon in his house but his mother keeps telling him that there is no such thing as a dragon. {solution} The problem is solved when the mother acknowledges that there is a dragon.
  • sequencing - Billy woke up and found a real dragon in his room. Billy told his mom about the dragon but she said there was no such thing. Billy came downstairs to eat pancakes and he only ate one because the dragon ate the rest. Billy went to brush his teeth and the dragon went into the hallway and took a nap. The dragon started to grow big. The mother had to clean all around the dragon. The dragon finally got so big its head was out the front door and the tail was out the back. The dragon woke up hungry so it chased a bakery truck. Father came home to find his house missing. The neighbor told him that it went running down the street. Father found the house and walked up the dragons neck to get in the house. Billy's mother finally recognized that there was such a thing as a dragon. The dragon started getting smaller.
  • story elements - list title, author, character's, setting, beginning, middle, end, or problem & solution.
  • summarize - {someone} Billy {wanted} wanted the dragon {but} but his mother said there was not such a thing as a dragon {so} so he ignored the dragon and {then} then it started to grow really big. {finally} Finally his mother recognized there was a dragon and the dragon started to shrink.

You can download this free activity from either my TpT store or my Teachers Notebook store.

Proud to be linked with:

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Happy reading!


  1. Wow! Just read this on Friday!

    Jessica Stanford


    1. How funny is that! This book is a great reminder that a little recognition goes a long way!
      Have a great week!

  2. I am going to have to add this to my list of books to buy. It looks so cute and soo full of possibilities. I love your blog. I am a LOVER of all things books.

    My (Not So) Elementary Life

    1. Hi Heidi,
      I too am a lover of all things books! This is a great book and a great reminder that a little recognition goes a long way! I hope you can add this to your library.

  3. I love using picture books! Definitely taking advantage of this freebie and adding that book to my "must buy" list!

    Thanks :)


    1. Hi Heather,
      I hope you can get the book, as I said earlier in one of the above replies it is a good reminder that a little recognition goes a long way.
      Have fun!

  4. I love your blog, I'm your newest follower!
    Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas!

    1. Hi Fern,
      Thank you for becoming a friend...I just visited you!

  5. Thank you for another great freebie. I love coming to your blog.
    Classroom Companion

  6. I love your blog! I have awarded you the "One Lovely Blog Award"

    Head on over to my blog to check it out: ThirdGradeIsAHoot

  7. I have awarded you with the One Lovely Blog award!!! Come on over to my blog and check out the details!!! Congratulations again!!!


  8. I awarded you the One Lovely Blog award! Check out my blog for details!
    :) Dana
    Fun in First Grade


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