Curious George Goes to the Hospital by H.A. Rey - Teaching Ideas

Of all the Curious George books, this is my favorite. The illustrations of George in this book are so darn adorable! I love the page of him walking up the stairs to the hospital, holding his little ball and the page where he is going to get a shot...priceless.

In this 1966 book, George has a stay in the hospital because of an upset stomach. Now lets face it, the hospital in 1966 was much different than the hospital of today, which makes this a fun book to read.

Again, here are a list of reading skills and strategies, and some ideas to help you come up with a great lesson for your students.

If you haven't yet seen the FREE questioning download, there will be a link at the bottom of this post to get your free copy.

Also, the activity packet is available...see the pictures below as well.

Reading level: 2.6
Theme: Curiosity
Genre: Humorous Fiction

Suggested Vocabulary: stethoscope, barium, children's ward, blood transfusion, record player

Reading skills and strategies:
  • asking questions - {possible questions before} I wonder why George goes to the hospital? Is George scared going to the hospital? {possible questions during} I wonder why Betsy was so sad? {possible questions after} I wonder why Betsy was in the hospital?
  • author's point of view - third person point of view
  • author's purpose - entertain {evidence} George put on a puppet show using both his arms and legs. George sat on a record player and went spinning around and flew off. George went riding through the hospital in a go cart and ran into everything, making a huge mess. All these things are silly and make the story entertaining.
  • beginning, middle, end - {most important event from beginning} George ate a puzzle piece and had to go to the hospital to get it removed. {most important event from middle} George makes friends with all the kids in the hospital. {most important event from end} George makes Betsy laugh.
  • cause and effect - Why did George have to go to the hospital? because he swallowed a puzzle piece and did not feel good. Why did George start crying? because he was sad that the man with the yellow hat had to leave him at the hospital. Why did Betsy smile for the first time? because George had a puppet show using all 4 of his hands at the same time. Why did George jump into the go-cart? because Steve was not using it, he was taking his first steps. Why did George not get into trouble for making such a big mess at the hospital? because he made Betsy laugh and laugh which she hadn't done in a long, long time.
  • characterization - describe George {looks like, feelings, thoughts, character}
  • compare & contrast - any of the Curious George books or a hospital of today with a hospital of the past.
  • connections - {possible text-to-self connections} Swallowing something you shouldn't have. Going to the hospital. Being scared at the hospital. {possible text-to-text connections} connect to any of the Curious George books
  • fact & opinion - {facts} George swallows a puzzle piece. George gets admitted to the hospital. George gets a shot. George gave a puppet show. George landed in the Mayor's arms.  {opinions} The hospital is a scary place. Getting a shot hurts. Puppet shows are funny. Record players make good merry-go-rounds.
  • plot - the turning point in the story was when George took Steve's go-cart and wheeled himself all over the hospital.
  • predict - Why do you think George goes to the hospital. How do you think the doctors are going to get the puzzle piece out of George? How do you think George felt when the man with the yellow hat had to leave him at the hospital? What do you think is going to happen when George jumps into the go-cart?
  • sequencing -  George finds the puzzle box and opens it up. George eats one of the puzzle pieces. George does not feel good so the man with the yellow hat takes him to the doctor. They take an x-ray of George's stomach. The man with the yellow hat admits George to the hospital so they can take out the puzzle piece. George gets sad when the man with the yellow hat has to leave the hospital. George takes a pill and gets a shot. George goes to the operating room. George wakes up and feels better. George goes to the children's play room. George does a puppet show for all the kids. George gets taken back to his bed for a nap. When George wakes up Steve is taking his first steps. George jumps in Steve's go-cart. George takes off in the go-cart. George goes too fast and runs into the lunch cart and falls out of the cart and into the Mayor's arms. George is about to get into trouble but Betsy starts laughing and everyone is happy that she is laughing. George and the man with the yellow hat go home. The nurse brings George a gift. When George gets home he opens the gift and it is the puzzle piece they took out of his stomach. 
  • story elements - list title, author, character's, setting, beginning, middle, end, or problem & solution.


In the activity packet above, to go along with this book, there is a number recognition activity, numbers 1-20 plus a recording sheet.

Click here to see ALL the preview pictures of this fun packet.

Happy reading!


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  2. Thank you so much for sharing this! It's great. We have a monkey theme so this will come in great use with our Curious George books! :)

    1. Hi Cathy,
      I hope you can find a time use these...asking questions is such an important reading strategy.
      Enjoy your day,

  3. I love picture books, too. Thank you for the freebie. I found you through the linky party and am your newest follower.


    1. Hi Michelle,
      Thanks for finding me and following! I just went and visited you, I am not sure how I have gone this long without following your blog...great stuff!


Thoughts and comments are always welcome!