Release Date: October 11, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
When you tell a child this is very serious they will embrace this and become somber. Well, until they look around and see the context clues or a donkey who is trying to be silent but TOOTS! Who could not giggle at the antics found in This Is a Serious Book by Jodie Parachini and illustrations by Daniel Rieley? A donkey tooting by page three does not bode for a VERY serious book at all! Reading this book was fun because the narrator is a very stern voice with bold letters and capitalization throughout, but the pictures in the background allow the reader to know the narrator is losing the battle of being VERY serious.
It teaches children there is a time and a place to be serious, but life also offers many moments where you must embrace the fun. The pictures are hilarious as is the font. Even a nonreader can see the font size grows as the patience of the narrator fades and the person reading it will also elevate their voice based on the font changes.
In the Classroom:
There are a variety of verbs and adjectives used to make the characters in the book try to be serious. Using these words found in the text have your students distinguish the meanings–is there a difference between the shades being used (e.g. look, peek, glance, stare, glare, scowl) and do the adjectives differ in intensity by defining or choosing them by acting out the meanings (CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.5.D.)
Have students write their own sentences using a verb and an adjective and then make them write two more displaying their ability to make the sentences become more intense as did the narrator in the story.