Thursday, September 13, 2018

The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka


Alexander Wolf begins the chronological plot and his innocence as he was making a birthday cake for his dear old granny. The conflict arises when he realizes that he does not have enough sugar and he had a terrible sneezing cold. The conflict of person-against-person arises at the knock of the first, second, and third pigs home.

The main character, A. Wolf tries to ask the pigs for a cup of sugar so that he is able to make the cake for granny. He is retelling his story from the comfort of his prison cell. The story he tells is within his neighborhood.Unfortunately, the wolf sneezes quite terribly at each one of the homes causing them to come down to the ground, killing the pigs. The wolf unable to deny himself the right to a tasty meal, eats the poor little pigs. The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs features; the main character Alexander Wolf (a.k.a Big Bad Wolf) and the antagonist’s pig number one, pig number two, and pig number three.

Scieszka uses the point of view of Alexander Wolf to give a new side to the story most of us have read of the three little pigs. The author carefully chooses words and scenarios to describe the events in such a way that you may start to believe in the Wolf’s innocence. The sentences are short and to the point making this book easily read and understood. The theme of The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs, is that you cannot believe everything that you hear and there is always more than one side of the story.

This book rates five out of five. I really adored Scieszka’s version that character A. Wolf tries to pull off, of what “really” happened that day. It is such a fun read, to enjoy over and over again.

There are three ways that I may use this book in the upper elementary classroom are as follows: Think Aloud, Directed Reading Activity, and Anticipation Guide.

(1) Using the Think Aloud strategy I would begin by discussing the original story, The Three Little Pigs providing the necessary background information the students need to know to understand the retelling. Discuss the illustrations of the book as I begin to read the story. Reading with expression and in the voice of the wolf, I would then ask the students what the differences are between the Wolf’s story and the original. Ask the students to predict what will happen next, once the wolf has left the home of the first pig, and then again after the
second. When the Wolf is behind bars on the last page, I would ask the students if they believed his view of the events that happened that day.

(2) Using the Directed Reading Activity, I would first open the discussion by preparing the readers for the story giving them background information required to understand it; such as, the original three little pigs story and any words used in the book the students may not know yet. I would then present some questions to the students to guide them through their reading of the story to themselves. Once they have read the story themselves we could discuss the questions I asked them before they read, giving them plenty of opportunity to
go back and use the book as facts to back up their answers. I would conclude the activity with a handout or project that could further assess the goals and objectives I have in using this book.

(3) Using the Anticipation Guide strategy, I would create about three or four statements identifying the major concepts within the story (I believe everything that I read, there is only one side to every story, etc). Giving the students a chance to agree or disagree with these concepts prior to reading the story. After agreeing and/or disagreeing with such statements we would read the story aloud. Then we would return to the concepts presented to them at the beginning of the lesson where we can discuss if we still think the same way
we did at the beginning of the story or if we found that we have a new opinion based on what we learned from the story.

Here, in these exclusive audio and video interviews with Reading Rockets, Jon Scieszka talks about his "weird" style and his concern about boys and reading:



I read this book as a part of my #BookaDay Reading Challenge, inspired by Donalyn Miller. My goal is to read at least one children's literature book every weekday and share my thoughts here on my blog. Please feel free to subscribe or connect with me on social media to follow my journey through the books I read. Until next time ...

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