One of my favorite things to do with my children is sit and read together. We have logged countless hours on the couch together or snuggled on the bed reading wonderful stories that have inspired their imaginations and opened up great learning moments along the way.
For my preschool children learning is a natural extension of pretty much anything we do so one of the things I love to do is to take a favorite book and turn it into a unit study.
Big Sarah’s Little Boots is a lovely story, written by Canadian children’s author Paulette Bourgeois (author of the famous Franklin series). In it, Sarah discovers that her favorite boots no longer fit her feet and is sure that they have shrunk! She tries everything she can think of to make her boots big enough to fit again and finally goes to inform her mother of the problem. Her mother suggests that the problem might not be the boots have shrunk, but that she has grown, which Sarah does NOT want to hear.
There are so many wonderful learning opportunities for preschoolers in this book. Let’s explore a few.
One of the reasons that Sarah loves her boots is the way they look. “They were as shiny as a wet slicker and as yellow as a bathtub duck.” When we share our special stories with other people we often compare things to help people understand us better. Practice making your own comparisons.
Words that Describe (Adjectives)
Another reason Sarah loves her boots is because of the sounds they make when she jumps into puddles. She uses the words “squish” and “kersplat” to help us imagine what the sounds are like. What other words can you think of to describe the noises that water can make?
Can you think of something of yours that is a favorite thing? What if that thing didn’t fit you anymore? What if you lost it? Tell me a story about what you would do.
Measuring and Comparing
Sarah was measured by her mother to see if she grew. Ask your mom or dad to measure you. How tall are you? Measure the rest of your family. How tall are they? Draw a picture of your family and line them up in your picture from the shortest to the tallest.
Skip counting by 2’s
When Sarah goes with her mother to buy new rubber boots the salesman in the stores shows her many pairs of boots. A pair of boots is 2 boots. There were rainbow boots, red boots, purple boots, plaid boots, buckled boots, zippered boots and yellow boots with a fire engine red stripe around the toes and the tops. Color the page of boots and then count by ones and then skip count by 2’s to find out how many boots the salesman showed Sarah.
Matching Memory Game
Now that you have colored your boots and counted them, cut them out and play a game. Turn the boots over and mix them up and then play a memory matching game and find all the pairs again.
Make a Book
Paint or draw some pictures to go with the story you told about your favorite thing. When you’re finished your pictures, ask mom or dad to help you to write down your story and use your pictures to create your own book.
Finger Painting Boots (or any other shape you’d prefer)
Cut out a pair of boots from a piece of paper. Decorate them with fingerprint. After they’re dry, mount them on a piece of construction paper.
How are they made?
Do you wonder how rubber boots are made? Here is a short video that shows you how they are made in a factory.
Why do rubber boots keep water out? Why do your feet get wet if you only have your running shoes or socks on? Gather up some things around the house and experiment with what keeps water from going through it, and what lets the water pass through. Can you figure out what makes the difference?
What makes the rain?
Find some books that explain the water cycle and how water evaporates, collects in the clouds and then releases as rain. Demonstrate this for your children by boiling a kettle and showing them how water when it heats up, it turns to gas and rises. If you can boil the kettle or pot near a window – watch how the water then condenses as it cools and explain how when the water in the air cools it becomes water droplets and then falls back down to earth.
Big Sarah’s Little Boots Inspired Printable Pack
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Tammy loves her life as a military wife in the Canadian Forces and homeschooling mom of 6 terrific kids. She is a fun loving, life-long learner who loves to create, encourage and share. Married to Gerry, an army medic, she blogs about faith, family and home schooling fun in the Canadian Forces and shares openly about their family’s ups and downs with a recent diagnosis of PTSD, and how God is their anchor in the midst of it all.
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