Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Three Ninja Pigs

The Three Ninja Pigs retold by Corey Rosen Schwartz and illustrated by Dan Santat is a fractured fairy tale. No, I did not know this word until my third-grader come home with a Book Share project :) South Pasadena has this wonderful story, among many others, which is a retold fairy tale. This version of the class tale was a big hit in our household over the last few weeks. The three pigs, two brothers and a sister, train in aikido, jujitzu, and karate to protect themselves against the wolf. The story is retold in rhyme.

My "ah-ha---I could do this with book" moment came when I realized what an authentic opportunity fractured fairy tales present for comparison and contrast. It is also appealing that the actual read isn't challenging in and of itself for a third or fourth-grade student, yet the sentence structure work which could be practiced within the context of the story IS relevant and challenging for those grades. Many schools do book buddies with younger grades, so these stories can be "recycled" (practiced in a book buddy setting with first or second graders) and then practiced at grade level in a more applicable "common core" context. 

One of my new ideas for designing student practice is to present compound sentences using the coordinating conjunction but, which students then revise using the subordinating conjunction although. This is an idea in progress so stay tuned.

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