Monday, October 15, 2012

The Night Before Halloween by Natasha Wing - Teaching Ideas

This is a wonderfully written book using the story Twas The Night Before Christmas. It is written with all the rhythm and rhyme as the original, so is it a lot of fun to read out loud. Your students will enjoy hearing how the witch and all her monster friends are getting ready for the the children to visit. Your students will connect to the part when the children are all getting ready for trick-or-treating and they will laugh when the children all run away from the witch and all her friends. But then you will see your students get a bit sad when they realize that the witch and her friends were throwing the children a Halloween party and weren't going to scare them. But never fear, the witch and her friends decide to not let the children running away ruin their party!

If this book is not on your to read list, you won't go wrong if you add it. You can also create an awesome lesson using the skills and strategies listed below. Though, if you would just like something fun for your students to do after reading this story I have created a Match the Rhyme game to go with this book. Look at the bottom of the post for more information on the game.

Reading level: 2.1 
Theme: Halloween
Genre: fiction

Suggested Vocabulary: loom

Reading skills and strategies:
  • author's point of view - 3rd person. Find 3 pieces of evidence to show third person.
  • author's purpose - entertain {evidence} The story is written in rhyme. The pictures are silly and there is no such thing and witches and monsters. All these things make a silly story.
  • beginning, middle, end - {most important event from beginning}The witch and monsters were preparing for the trick-or-treaters that would soon be there. {most important event from middle} The children went out trick-or-treating. {most important event from end} The witch and monsters didn't get sad that the children ran away, they continued to dance with delight.
  • cause and effect - Why did the witch and monsters gather? because they were preparing for the trick-or-treaters that would soon be there. Why was there a costume party? because it was Halloween Day. Why was it time to go trick-or-treating? because dinner was served and the kids were done eating. Why did all the children run? because the witch was not wearing a disguise. Why were the monsters sad? because they wanted the children to come and play but they ran away instead.
  • characterization - describe the witch {looks like, feelings, thoughts, character}
  • connections - {possible text-to-self connections} Going trick-or-treating. Getting scared at a house you trick-or-treated at. Going on a hayride, or bobbing for apples. Going to a costume party or being in a costume parade.
  • drawing conclusions & inferencing - The witch and monsters were making a surprise for the children, what do you think the surprise was going to be? {text clues} The witch and monsters blew up balloons and hung streamers all night. The witch said welcome when she opened the door. The witch and monsters were sad when the children ran away. {what I know} When I blow up balloons and hang streamers I am going to have a party.  {my conclusion} I think the witch and monsters were going to surprise the children with a Halloween party. 
  • predict - What do you think the story is about? What do you think the witch and monsters are preparing for? What do you think the children are going to do when the door is opened? What do you think the surprise was going to be?

This game pack has 2 games in it, one uses the rhyming words from the story and the other uses simple 1 syllable words. You can choose which game would be the best for your students.

 You can find this game in either one of my stores.

 Happy Halloween!

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