Jeremy is a little boy who never leaves his room until the demanding monster he draws to entertain himself forces him to go outside where he finally makes new friends. In this lesson students get to create their own monsters and a list of their demands, incorporating art and literacy.
Read Jeremy Draws a Monster by Peter McCarty. Discuss the events of the story including the list of demands made by the monster. Discuss the illustrations, how the artist used multiple layers of lines and scribbles (scrumbling) to create depth and texture in the monster and the other items Jeremy drew.
Give students a piece of 9 x 12 in. (22 x 30 cm) white paper and Crayola® Washable Fine Line Markers. Invite students to draw their own monsters. Remind them to include lots of line work, similar to the illustrations in the story.
Have students create a list of demands their monsters would want. This can even be on a pre-printed slip like the example shown below:
(NAME) DRAWS A MONSTER
My monster wants to eat…
My monster wants to play…
My monster wants to wear…
My monster wants to go to…
Display monsters with their lists of demands. Allow class time for students to peruse each others’ work and discuss the demands!
LA: Ask and answer questions about a text.
LA: Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events.
LA: Write an informative text in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide some sense of closure.
VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences and stories.
VA: Explore and understand prospective content for works of art.
VA: Use visual structures and functions of art to communicate ideas.
Use Jeremy Draws a Monster as a lesson in manners. How do we ask for something we need, how to we respond when we get it, etc. How would the story change if Jeremy’s monster had better manners? Did he have bad manners because he was a monster?
Take a deeper look at Jeremy’s character for a lesson in personal identity. Why didn’t he leave his room? Have students relate to an experience they had where they were lonely or nervous. How did they resolve their problem realistically? What advice could they give Jeremy?
Explore where Jeremy’s monster went after leaving on the bus. Use the monster to create a geography lesson where the monster arrives in different regions/towns/ecosystems around the country.