I love a rainy day and it’s been raining cats and dogs here, three inches last week and well on to adding 4inches this week. What a wonderful time to cuddle up with a good book. It is just a coincidence that at school we are reading a chapter in Beverly Cleary’s book Ramona Quimby, Age 8 entitled “Rainy Sunday” in reading.
I love Beverly Cleary books, perhaps partly because as a child I met Beverly Cleary at the West Seattle Public Library. My friend, Laurie Peterson, and I went with her mom and listened to Mrs. Cleary read an excerpt from her book and then I got her autograph. I had long forgotten the incident until recently when I was cleaning out a closet and I ran across my old childhood scrapbook. Looking though the scrapbook there wasn’t much of interest, an old newspaper article about a teenage neighbor that was crowned Miss West Seattle, a postcard from friend, that type of thing. But as I turned the page I saw in third grade handwriting; “signature of a famous author.” I snickered and wondered whom a third grader thought was a famous writer and then on closer inspection there was Beverly Cleary’s autograph! Wow!
I had the students write in their journals what they had done over the rainy weekend. It was sad, “watch TV,” “play DS” that type of response. I decided then and there to have the kids put together a Rainy Day Survival Handbook.
The table of contents consists of the following:
1. Put a puzzle together (The first thing I had the kiddos do was color a picture of the book’s setting, then cut out the puzzle design on the other side and place in an envelope.)
2. Play a game (I had the students place the rule of the "Dots Game" in their book and then play the game with a friend)
3. Write a letter (They wrote a letter to Beverly Cleary)
4. Make cookies (They copied the recipe for no bake cookies into the book and we made a batch to taste)
5. Watch a video (We watched Ralph and the Motorcycle and then they created a comic strip featuring Ralph S. Mouse)
6. Put on a puppet show (They made puppets and put on a readers theater)
7. Read a good book (The kiddos did a quick book report making a flipbook)
8. Make mom breakfast in bed (Students wrote down the recipe and made omelets in a bag)
This activity was both educational and a great way to get through the rainy school week. We all had a great time.