Have you ever had an unusual friendship? One in which it seems like your friendship doesn’t seem to work very well, or at all? Maybe you felt that your friends wouldn’t approve? These were all questions posed before we began reading Please Don’t Eat Me by author and illustrator Liz Climo. This book highlights the journey to friendship between an unlikely pair, a small rabbit and a hungry bear.
Teacher Thoughts ~
- Liz Climo’s illustrations and speech bubbles provide a great introduction on how to read a graphic novel. Students who are new to reading graphic novels can practice reading the pictures and focusing on the order of the speech bubbles.
- The speech bubbles in this text provide the perfect opportunity to teach students how to include dialogue in their writing. During an editing lesson in Writer’s Workshop, we took the words of the bear and rabbit and wrote them in narrative form. We were able to discuss how to punctuate dialogue and work on synonyms.
- There are many messages that can be discussed while reading this story. Students noticed the bear trying to impress his friends, which was surprising to them. They began making connections to their own experiences, which provided the opportunity for a bigger discussion about standing up for yourself, your friendships and your beliefs. We were able to weave this theme into our morning meetings throughout the week.
- Students enjoyed the humor in the story, as the rabbit finally became fed up with the bear. After taking time to reread this story, one student remarked, “I liked it better the second time!”
Using post it notes to record their thinking has become second nature for my students. For this story, I asked the students to think about this book and to “stop and jot” their thinking during, or after I read. Many noted the strong author’s message, while others asked questions or shared their favorite parts of the book.
There are so many ways to incorporate Please Don’t Eat Me into your Reader’s and Writer’s Workshop: How to Read/Write a Graphic Novel, Asking Questions, Making Predictions, Identifying and Writing Dialogue, Author’s Message. The possibilities are endless!