WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE

posted Dec 18, 2014, 10:02 AM by Patrick Johnson
Yesterday we read the popular story: Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak.  

The purpose of this lesson was to separate questions where the answers were easily found in the text to ones that required deeper thinking beyond the text. 

As I read the story, I wrote these question on sticky notes and placed them on the board:
What is the boy's name?
What is Max dressed up as?
Was Max's mother justified in sending Max to his bedroom? Was that a fair punishment?
Why is there a forest growing in Max's room?
When will Max return home?
What is a wild thing?
What island is Max arriving at?
How long will Max be travelling on this boat?
Why did Max send the Wild Things to bed without any super?
Why do we never see Max's mother?
Max's dinner was still warm when her return. Did he really go anywhere?

After I finishing the story, we went through each question using the chart below

We separated the questions that mattered and where the answer could not be found explicitly in the text. Each table group received one of those questions to answer. After several minutes, table groups switched questions. By the end of the period, all of the table groups answered all of the question. Groups also were able to read other groups' answers. Afterwards, we discussed all of the answers to the questions as a class.

Students recorded their thinking about each of the questions:

Students' answers to the deeper thinking questions:

Was Max's mother justified in sending Max to his bedroom? Was that a fair punishment?
-Maybe it was late and she had a bad day at work.
-Yes because he was not suppose to use the words "I am going to eat you up."
-No because he was just having fun.
-I think the punishment is not fair because he was joking and didn't mean it.

Why is there a forest in Max's room?
-Maybe he was using his imagination.
-So he can have a fun adventure.
-Maybe because he was dreaming or visualizing it.
-Maybe it was the start of his dream.

Why did Max send the wild things to be without supper?
-Maybe he was upset because his mom sent him to bed without any supper so he sent them to bed without any supper.
-Because he is like his mom.
-Because he did not have any food.
-Maybe it was bedtime there.

Why do we never see Max's mother?
-Maybe because the mother was not a main character.
-Because this like like Charlie Brown.
-Maybe because the illustrator and the author wanted to make the book short or they thought the mother was a bad character.

Max's dinner was still warm when he returned. Did he really go anywhere?
-Max's dinner was still warm because maybe Max just dreamed it up.
-Maybe because it was Max's imagination.
-I think no because he was imagining it.
-No because he was visualizing.
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