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A Listening Library Study Guide

I. PRE-TEACHING

A. Have the class define and discuss these terms:

shinnying, radiator, abdominal, friar, trapeze, acrobats, mackerel, pry, wedged, exasperated, gait, sauntered, tartly, diminutive, detestable, sulky, serge, consternation, flotsam, bronchitis, slithering, gingerly, perish, delicatessen, unlawful, pariah, jauntily, gauze, pincers, rhinestones, substitute, discipline, scholars, nimbly, abomination, reminiscently, solemn, objectionable, underprivileged, balsam, exertion, stamen, engraved, acquaintance, tranquil, muster, whippoorwill, fidgeting, astern, vales

Stuart Little

by E. B. White

Stuart Little, a mouse born to a human family, seeks adventures wherever he goes, from captaining a yacht, to substitute teaching, to driving his own little car, to scouring the countryside in search of his best friend, a beautiful bird named Margalo.

suggests? In what ways does Stuart try to avoid meeting Harriet Ames? What does he suggest in his letter? What happens to his canoe? What are some of the places the telephone repairman has seen on his travels?

B. For Discussion:

1. In what ways does Stuart help his family? What are some of the scrapes he gets into? 2. Stuart and the students in the class have a discussion about the difference between a law and very good advice. What do they conclude? 3. What does the telephone repairman mean when he says, "A person who is looking for something doesn't travel very fast"? Is this a good thing? Why or why not? 4. Discuss the ending. Why do you think Stuart doesn't find Margolo at the end? Would you rather the book ended with him finding her? Why or why not?

B. Before beginning the story, discuss with the class the following questions:

1. Do you have any pets? What would it be like to have your pet talk to you and wear clothes? 2. If you could go on an adventure, where would you go? What kinds of things would you do and see? 3. What would it be like to be the size of a mouse? What problems might you have? What would be fun about it?

III. EXTENDING THE LESSON

Give students the opportunity to work with partners, groups, the whole class, or alone.

THEMES

family, friendship, responsibility, siblings, pets, animal stories, fantasy, courage

II. PRESENTATION

A. Understanding the Story:

1. Begin with Chapters 1-5: In what ways is Stuart like a mouse? How does Stuart help with problems at home? Why does Mr. Little want "Three Blind Mice" torn from the nursery book? Why is he worried about the mouse hole in the kitchen? What happens when Stuart shows off to Snowball? How does Snowball lead them off the trail? How is Stuart finally found? 2. Advance to Chapters 6-10: How does Stuart get on the bus? What does he like about the sailboats? Why is the Wasp's owner excited about putting Stuart aboard? What happens when the policeman falls in the pond? What is unusual about Margelo the bird? Why is it good Stuart goes downstairs that night? How is Stuart saved from the river? What plan does Snowball suggest to the Angora? What does Margelo decide to do? 3. Complete the story with Chapters 11-15: What does Stuart decide to do after Margelo leaves? How does he get a car for his trip? What are some laws the class

INTERDISCIPLINARY CONNECTIONS:

A. Language Arts:

1. No one seems surprised that the Little's second son is a mouse. Have students write a story about an unusual happening in a normal household with the same humorous tone. For example, what if a dinosaur came to tea? Or someone wakes up to find the house turned upside-down? Encourage imagination and exaggeration in these stories. 2. When they first wake up, have students notice the sights, sounds, smells, and feelings they have, then write a description in their journals of their morning to share with the class when they get to school. 3. The Littles have to cut "Three Blind Mice" out of the song book and change the line in the poem, "The Night Before Christmas," to "...nothing is stirring, not even a louse." Have students think of other stories, songs, or poems that might offend a mouse to share with the class. Have them rewrite the stories, songs, or poems so they would be less upsetting to a mouse.

Middle Grade Unabridged Audio

4. Have students listen to the jokes Stuart and the owner of The Wasp make about the lazy boy who doesn't know "a squall from a squid" or "a deck from a dock and then make up some of their own.

B. Art and Music:

1. Have students select records, tapes, or CDs from the library that might serve as appropriate background music to some of the scenes. Have them look for playful music like Percy Grainger's Walking the Dog or Saint Sans Carnival of the Animals. 2. Have students make a bulletin board about the story. They might find a stuffed animal mouse to put in the center of the board to represent Stuart, then draw pictures of all his adventures, like getting wrapped up in the window shade, sailing the boat, and having the picnic. They could include a small bird for Margalo, a doll for Harriet, a model sailboat, a model car, a birch bark canoe, and other items mentioned in the story. 3. Have students bring items from home to make a bedroom or sitting room for Stuart. Hold a contest to see who can make the most comfortable room.

2. At birth, Stuart is so small, he could have been sent first class with a three-cent stamp. How much would it cost to send him today? Have students find out about postal rates and how they are determined. Why is it so much more expensive today than when the book was first written? 3. When Stuart goes down the drain to find his mother's ring, he comes out slimy and smelly. Have students find out why a drain would be so unpleasant. They might read or listen to Andrew Lost # 2: In the Bathroom by J. C. Greenburg to learn more about this. 4. When he's on the sailing boat, Stuart is struck by a giant wave. Have students learn about tidal waves and tsunamis. What causes them? Why are they so destructive?

Theme Related Reading and Listening:

Listening Library offers additional titles that explore similar themes and content areas. Use the information below to purchase audiobooks from our extensive list of awardwinning and popular titles to enhance the learning experience for students in every classroom or library. More titles by E. B. White are available from Listening Library. See the catalog for a complete listing of these titles. Other titles students may enjoy:

· Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery · Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll · Cat and Mouse in a Haunted House by Geronimo Stilton · The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden · The Curse of the Cheese Pyramid by Geronimo Stilton · Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie

USING AUDIOBOOKS IN THE CLASSROOM

When it comes to teaching today's students, sometimes books are just not enough. In an increasingly technological and information-savvy world, the ability to read will be critical to every child's success. The value of audiobooks as a learning tool in the education of children is widely recognized by experts. Audiobooks bring written text to life, adding an interactive quality that can ignite a child's imagination. They encourage reading by broadening vocabularies, stretching attention spans, and fostering critical-thinking skills. Listening to audiobooks in the classroom can effectively enrich the reading experience and aid your students in understanding and appreciating literature, history, theatre arts, and more!

C. Social Studies:

1. Stuart lives in New York City. Have students locate New York City on a map and find the places Stuart goes. What is the park where he goes and where the sailing contest takes place? They might learn how this large park came to be in the middle of a big city like New York. 2. When Stuart is caught in the garbage truck, it heads for the East River, which he says is dirty. Have students find out how garbage is disposed of in a big city like New York. How are the rivers and the ocean used for this? What changes have taken place to clean up our waterways? 3. Have students come up with some laws that would be good for the world. See if they can keep the list short and still cover everything important. 4. Anthony, a boy in the class, says, "Rats are objectionable." Why do rats have a bad reputation? In what ways have they affected history?

For a FREE school and library catalog of Listening Library's unabridged productions: · · · · · Call TOLL FREE 1-800-733-3000 FAX us at 1-800-940-7046 email us at [email protected] visit our website at www.school.booksontape.com or write: Books on Tape 1745 Broadway New York, NY 10019

© 2008 Listening Library

D. Science and Math:

1. Have students look inside a baby grand piano and then make a drawing labeling its parts.

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