"The Magic Tree House" is a series of simple chapter books written by Mary Pope Osborne. These fun stories are written for children ages 5 to 9 and feature a magic tree house that allows the characters to travel to different periods in history to learn about important events. The books have important tie-ins to social studies and science lessons but are also used to prompt different writing activities for elementary students.
"Mummies in the Morning" Writing Activity
A free printable Scribe For Hire worksheet that accompanies the book "Mummies in the Morning" is available from Random House. Have children fill out this imaginary job application by writing their names, ages and favourite subjects. Then have them use the lessons in the book or a book on hieroglyphics to write their names in this ancient Egyptian alphabet. Finally, have children write a persuasive sentence on why they should be chosen for the job of scribe.
"Night of the Ninjas" Writing Activity
A free printable ninja puppet is also available from the publisher's website. Children colour and cut out their own puppets, then attach them to a craft stick or drinking straw. Have children work together in groups of two or three to write a short play for their ninja puppets. Children then perform their plays for the class.
Dialogue Writing Activity
"What Are They Saying" worksheets are available from the publisher that accompany both the books "Civil War on Sunday" and "Revolutionary War On Wednesday." These worksheets ask children to fill in the speech bubbles that accompany the illustrations. Use this worksheet to accompany a lesson on learning how to write dialogue. After filling in the speech bubbles, have children write out the words as dialogue on a lined piece of paper using quotation marks and "he said/she said" speech attributions.
"Stage Fright on a Summer Night" Writing Activity
William Shakespeare is one of the characters in "Stage Fright on a Summer Night," and this literary connection makes for a great chance to practice writing skills. A printable worksheet from Random House helps children to create an outline for their own plays. After completing the outline have children turn this idea into a play by writing out their stories in the form of a play using spoken dialogue, action and setting descriptions.
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