Last week, we used Google Maps and Google Earth to take a journey to the settings of several of the Jan Brett's books. First, we learned how to use Google Maps by taking a tour of our school and noticing the different views and pieces of information that were provided. They were great at pointing out the symbols that were present on each type of map, but street view was by far our favorite! We could see people on our playground!!
Then we talked about all the places Jan Brett used in each of her books: Denmark, Costa Rica, Canada, and even Ukraine. We learned that Mrs. Brett uses pictures of each of these places to get inspirations for the illustrations in her books. By the time we were done, we had traveled the whole world in just a few minutes! And we had learned about countries we had never seen as well as how some illustrators get ideas for their art!
After reading through the book carefully (pretty hard to do with no words right?), we used transition words to retell the plot as a whole group. They were fantastic! I've never seen so many hands in the air (it was almost as if they were waving them and they just didn't care...).
Then we had a chance to practice on our own. Here is where we all got reeeeeaaaaaallllly hungry!! Using some pancake ingredient stand-ins, the kiddos walked their classmates through their idea of a perfect pancake breakfast (using those transition words, of course.). I must say, some of those pancakes look pretty delectable!