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Rabbit in the Garden!

Explore the world of small animal adventures by reading a Beatrix Potter book. Choose a favorite scene or character to illustrate from these children's classics.

  • Grade 1
    Grade 2
    Grade 3
  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Directions

    1. Share stories by British author and illustrator Beatrix Potter with the class. Invite students to get to know her beloved characters. You'll enjoy Peter Rabbit (along with Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail), Benjamin Bunny, and Squirrel Nutkin. Provide time for children to talk with classmates about their favorite characters, story events, and settings.
    2. Organize text and electronic resources for students to view on Beatrix Potter. Encourage students to research information about Potter's life and her publishing career. She got started as a writer by sending animal stories to a sick child. You'll learn that later she changed careers and raised sheep instead.
    3. Invite students to re-create a favorite scene from one of Potter's books. Suggest they make a garden gate cover for their original drawings. Students begin by folding a large piece of paper in half and crease. Unfold. Bring each edge to the center. Fold and crease. The folds create the garden gate.
    4. Using Crayola® Colored Pencils or Color Sticks, students draw a background scene of sky and garden. Accent it with a gate and fence. Use Crayola Washable Markers to highlight the fence.
    5. Ask students to open their gate flaps. Encourage them to use their imaginations to show a favorite scene from a Beatrix Potter story. Which characters are in the scene? Is there a Rabbit in the Garden?
    6. When scenes are complete, provide time in the school day for students to individually present their artwork to small groups of classmates, explaining what they decided to include in the picture and why.
    7. When all presentations are complete, bring the class together to discuss student research on the life of Beatrix Potter. Discuss how they feel the life of Beatrix Potter influenced her writing.
  • Standards

    LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.

    LA: Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.

    LA: Participate in shared research and writing projects (e.g., read a number of books on a single topic to produce a report; record science observations).

    LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions with diverse partners on grade level topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.

    LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.

    SS: Use appropriate resources, data sources, and geographic tools to generate, manipulate, and interpret information.

    SS: Identify and describe ways family, groups, and community influence the individual's daily life and personal choices.

    SS: Demonstrate an ability to use correctly vocabulary associated with time such as past, present, future, and long ago; read and construct simple timelines; identify examples of change; and recognize examples of cause and effect relationships.

    VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.

    VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.

  • Adaptations

    Student groups select a Beatrix Potter character to investigate. Using chart paper, students write words that help to describe the character. Members of the group collaborate to compose and illustrate a short story on an original adventure with this character as a focus of the story. Present the original story to classmates or videotape a presentation and upload the video file to a class computer for future viewing.

    Student groups use Crayola Oil Pastels to create a collage of Beatrix Potter characters.

    Students investigate the live and careers of Helen Beatrix Heelis. Organize research into an electronic format for presentation to classmates.


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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