The Story of Ferdinand, by Munro Leaf

            This is the story about a bull who was contented and happy being himself even if he was not like all the other bulls. This is a story about accepting others for who they are. Ferdinand is a bull who just does not like to fight and play rough like all the other bulls.  He is happy to sit and smell the flowers.

Materials

  • Dip cotton balls into different scents.  Put the cotton ball into small containers that the scent can come through. (IE; a zip lock bag with small pin holes along the seal). Seal the container so the children can not open them. (vanilla, perfume, vinegar, mouthwash, shampoo, liquid soap)
  • Tape measurer or yard stick

Vocabulary

  • Bull ( a boy cow)
  • Lonesome (sad from being alone)
  • Snort (the sound of air being forced through nose)
  •  Fierce (the fightingest)

Before Reading the Story

            Ask the children if they ever like to be alone and do quiet things all by themselves?  What kinds of things do you like to do by yourself?  Do you have a special place that you go when you want to be alone?  Show the children the front of the book and ask if they know what kind of an animal Ferdinand is (bull). Point out his neck muscles and say that bulls are very strong.  Show the children where Spain is on a globe or a map.  Explain to them that in Spain people fight with bulls kind of like how in the U.S. wrestlers fight with each other on television, it is a sport.

Social & Emotional Development/Self-Concept; begins to develop and express awareness of self in terms of specific abilities, characteristics, and preferences.

Reading the Story

When you get to the part where the author is telling how all the other bulls played and knocked their heads together; hold up your two fists and bump them together saying these are their heads.

Language Development/Listening & Understanding; understands an increasingly complex and varied vocabulary.

When you get to the part where Ferdinand sits on the bumble bee, stop and ask the children what they think is going to happen.

Literacy/Book Knowledge & Appreciation; demonstrates progress in abilities to retell and dictate stories from books and experiences; to act out stories in dramatic play; and to predict what will happen next in a story.

After Reading the Story

            Ask the children how they felt about Ferdinand not wanting to fight.? What if someone wanted to fight with you, what would you do?  Is it ok to not do what everybody else is doing?  Does everyone have to like to play in the mud just because I do?  Am I being a good friend if I try to make you play in the mud when you do not want to?  Is it ok to tell somebody “no” that you do not want to do something?

Social & Emotional Development/Cooperation; shows increasing abilities to use compromise and discussion in working, playing, and resolving conflicts with others. AND Approaches to Learning/Initiative & Curiosity; grows in eagerness to learn about and discuss a growing range of topics, ideas, and tasks.

Discovery

            In the story Ferdinand liked to smell the flowers.  Bring in several small containers that you have soaked a cotton ball in a scent.  Let the children sniff and guess what the scents are.  Ask them to tell you which scents they like and do not like.  Ask them to tell you what other scents they like (peanut butter, my shampoo, my baby when he’s not stinky)

Social & Emotional Development/Self-Concept; begins to develop and express awareness of self in terms of specific abilities, characteristics, and preferences.

            Begin a discussion on smells.  What do we use to smell with?  How do smells help us? (They tell us about smoke, they tell us where to find food). 

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; begins to describe and discuss predictions, explanations, nad generalizations based on past experiences.

            Did you know that if you have a very plugged nose you can not taste food?  At lunch if someone says they do not like something, see if they will try an experiment.  Have them plug their nose and take a bite of the food.  Tell them to hold their nose until after they have swallowed. THere, you see that was not so bad.

Science/Scientific Skills & Methods; begins to participate in simple investigations to test observations, discuss and draw conclusions, and form generalizations.

Music and Movement

            Do the fingerplay 5 Little Bulls

 5 little bulls                                           (hold up 5 fingers)

Bumping heads                                       (bump knuckles of hands together)

Bumped too hard so went to bed.          (rub forehead)    

4 Little bulls                                          (hold up 4 fingers)

Bumping Heads                                      (bump knuckles of hands together)

Bumped too hard so went to bed. (rub forehead)

3 bulls

2 bulls

1 little bull                                             (hold up 1 finger)

Couldn’t bump heads                               (shrug shoulder

He got bored so off he fled                         (put hands behind back)

Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to associate number concepts, vocabulary, quantities, and written numerals in meaningful ways.

            Teach the children the fingerplay, Here Is The Beehive

                        Here is the beehive                                   (Make a fist with hand)

                        But where are the bees?                            (Shrug shoulders)

                        Hiding away where nobody sees.            (Use other hand to point to fisted hand)

                        Oh, do you hear them?                             (Hold fisted hand to ea

                        They’re coming out of the hive

                        Here come the bees, 1,2,3,4,5!                   (Open up hand as count out the bees)

Mathematics/Number & Operations; develops increasing ability to count in sequence to 10 and beyond.

Blocks

            Encourage the children to use the blocks to make a fence.  Can they make a pattern fence with the blocks?

Mathematics/Patterns a & Measurement; enhances abilities to recognize, duplicate, and extend simple patterns using a variety of materials.

Art

            Cut out circles, petal shapes, leaf shapes, and long strips for stems. Let the children collage the parts together to make flowers.

Creative Arts/Art; progresses in abilities to create drawings, paintings, models, and other art creations that are more detailed, creative, or realistic.

Library and Writing

Ask each child what it is that they especially like to do. Write their responses onto a piece of paper. Encourage the child to then illustrate their words. (I like to pet my cat cause he is soft and tickles me. I like to play video games on my Mommies phone. I like to play with my sister).

Social & Emotional Development/Self-Concept; begins to develop and express awareness of self in terms of specific abilities, characteristics, and preferences. AND Physical Health & Development/Fine Motor Skills; progresses in abilities using writing, drawing, and art tools, including pencils, markers, chalk, paint brushes, and various types of technology.

Sand and Water

            Add silk or real flower petals to the water today.

Approaches to Learning/Initiative & Curiosity; approaches tasks and activities with increased flexibility, imagination, and inventiveness.

Dramatic Play

            Put fresh or silk flowers onto the table for the children to enjoy.

Approaches to Learning/Initiative & Curiosity; approaches tasks and activities with increased flexibility, imagination, and inventiveness.

Math and Manipulatives

Using unifix cubes or counters, put out two sets and ask the children to count each set and tell you which has more or which has less.

Mathematics/Number & Operations; begins to use language to compare numbers of objects with terms such as more, less, greater than, fewer, and equal to.

Outdoor Play

            Encourage the children to run and jump on the playground.  Set up a long jump area.  Mark a line across the ground and bring out a tape measurer.  Have the children run and at the line jump as far as they can.  Measure the children’s jumps using a tape measurer or yard stick.  Also have the children stand at the line and jump from this standing position.  Measure the length of their jumps.

Mathematics/Patterns & Measurement; shows progress in using standard and non-standard measures for length and area of objects.

Transitions

            Ask the children questions about their five senses as they go off to the next activity.  What do you use your nose for?  How does your nose help you to know about the world?  What is one thing you have to do to take care of your nose?  Continue using all the senses.

Science/Scientific Knowledge; expands knowledge of and respect for their bodies and the environment.

Resources

flower collaging

About Kerry CI am an Early Childhood Educator who has seen daily the value of shared book readings with my preschoolers. I use the book theme in my centers and can daily touch upon a variety of Early Childhood Domains which makes assessing the children easy and individualized.