Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Book talk: Creepy Carrots (Caldecott honor, 2013)

[For this booktalk you will need three or four props: one prop must be a real or fake carrot. The others can be scary, Halloween-like things: a scary mask, a picture of a ghost, a little skeleton, a picture of a haunted house, etc.  Don’t show the cover until you’re done with your prop intro.]
I have four items for you to examine today. A picture of a ghost, a little skeleton, a goblin mask, and a carrot. [Let them observe for a few seconds.] Talk to me about this group. Which item does not fit in? The carrot? Why doesn’t the carrot fit in? [Hopefully, one of the kids will say that it isn’t scary but the other items are.] Carrots aren’t scary? Are you serious? Does this mean you’re not afraid of carrots?
[Now you can show the book’s cover.] But what if you were haunted by creepy carrots? You thought they were harmless: you are so, so wrong, and that’s what Jasper Rabbit thought. He loved carrots, and he would just plop himself down in Crackenhopper Field gorging himself on carrots. They were his passion, but he is a rabbit, after all.
One day he was just minding his own business, about to pick some carrots, when all of a sudden, he thought he heard carrots creeping up behind him. He turned around, but there was nothing there.
But that night, in the bathroom mirror, as he was brushing his teeth: THERE THEY WERE!!!!! Creepy carrots out to get him!
Imagine living your life, the life of an innocent carrot-eating rabbit, while knowing that carrots are stalking you, watching you, and breathing their creepy little carroty breath right behind your back.
Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds, illustrated by Peter Brown. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2012. Unpaged. Booktalk to K-2. Caldecott medal honor book, 2013. Great quick read-aloud.

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