The Gist —
Sylvester finds a magic pebble that makes every one of his wishes come true. One day he accidentally makes a wish that turns him into a rock.
Why I like Sylvester and the Magic Pebble —
Besides the awesome illustrations of walking and talking donkeys, I love that this book epitomizes the be careful what you wish for lesson.
Read Aloud Tips for Sylvester and the Magic Pebble —
(read How to Use Book Notes if you are confused)
* You don’t have to do all of these, in fact, don’t do them all. Just pick one or two prompts per read aloud.
* The key to using these prompts is to making them conversational and natural. If you pull out a print out of questions or sound too probing, your child will read right through you. Be casual and they won’t know you are actually increasing their comprehension and growing interest in reading.
It’s helpful to preview the books you will read aloud so you know when certain parts are coming. Your child can preview the book with you. Flip through the pages and take a picture walk, but don’t read the words yet. Gather ideas about the book and what the book could possibly be about. This shouldn’t take long, maybe one minute for a shorter book and two for a longer book.
Have your child make a prediction at a turning point in the book, like when Sylevester’s parents sit down to picnic at the rock. They will read on with interest to find out if their prediction is correct.
At the end of the story, ask your child to connect this to their life. Model this for them. If it is not a detailed example, encourage the use of specific language. Example: When Sylvester found the pebble he was excited to share what he found with his parents. I know this because when I found a dollar on the street the other day I was really excited to show my family.
Ask your child to close their eyes and build a picture in their head of the page you are reading. A great page to do this on would be the one where Sylvester goes through the seasons as a rock.
Again, make these small tasks / questions fun. This is a time to connect with your child and maybe learn something about them that you didn’t know.