WRITING AND READING
This is a family favourite of ours!
Try to find some of these nonfiction learning titles:
20 Fun Facts About Spiders, by Therese Shea, Gareth Stevens Publishing, 2013 – This is part of the Fun Fact File: Bugs! Series and is easy to read and offers simple facts for young arachnologists.
Do All Spiders Spin Webs? Questions and Answers About Spiders, by Melvin and Gilda Berger, Illustrated by Roberto Osti, Scholastic Reference, 2000 - A good book that answers questions for young biologists.
How Do Spiders Make Webs?, by Melissa Stewart, Marshall Cavendish benchmark, 2009 – A thorough yet short enough book that looks at how a spider spins a web.
Spiders, by Marc Zabludoff, Marshall Cavendish, 2006 – This is a more in-depth look at spiders and would be an appropriate book for older kids as it is longer with more text divided into chapters and less pictures.
Spiders, by Siân Smith, Raintree, 2013 - part of the Creepy Critters Series, this book is great for young children and new readers as it has very little text, has large text, and it rhymes. There are many up close photographs of spiders in this introductory look at arachnids.
· Spiders Biggest! Littlest!, by Sandra Markle and photographs by Dr. Simon Pollard, Boyds Mills Press, 2004 – With larger text this is a good early schooler book but it offers more information than others because it is about different types of spiders.
Stronger Than Steel: Spider Silk DNA and the Quest for Better Bulletproof Vests, Sutures, and Parachute Rope, by Bridget Heos and photographs by Andy Comins, Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 2013 – This is a super book for older kids in the family, it is scientific and very interesting in a way beyond the normal non-fiction spider books. It does look at transgenetics though which is a touchy subject.
Wolf Spiders, by Joanne Mattern, Capstone Press, 2011 – This is part of the Fun Facts series and explores one type of spider with simple facts and large print for early readers. Other spiders and titles in the series include Black Widow, Jumping Spiders, Tarantulas, Trapdoor Spiders, and Water Spiders.
Here are some spider picture books:
Aaaarrgghh, Spider!, written and illustrated by Lydia Monks , Egmont, 2013 – A cute book about a spider who wants to be a family pet.
Anansi The Spider: a tale from the Ashanti, adapted and illustrated by Gerald McDermott, Henry Holt and Company, 1972 – an African tale about a father spider and his children
I’m Trying to Love Spiders, words and Pictures by Bethany Barton, Viking, 2015 – This is an swesome picture book! It is a learning book with facts in it as well, but has a lot fo humour and even has an outline of a handprint for when the “author/reader” accidentally squishes the spider.
Just Itzy, by Lana Krumwiede and illustrated by Greg Pizzoli, Candlewick Books, 2015 – Itzy Bitzy spider is starting Spindergarten and he doesn’t want to be called Bitzy anymore. Cute little tie in to other familiar spider tales.
The Spider and the Fly, based on the cautionary tale by Mary Howitt and illustrations by Tony DiTerlizzi, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2002 – The brilliant black and white illustrations reminiscent of 1920s horror movies make this classic tale come to life in a new way.
The Very Busy Spider, by Eric Carle, Philmoel Books, 1984 – This toddler book with the colourful illustrations of Eric Carle highlights how much work goes into spinning a web and also the beauty of a web. It’s a classic picture book about the humble spider.
Journal Question Prompt:
Write out one or more of the following questions in your Family Theme Day Scrapbook or on a piece of paper to glue in your scrapbook: What do you know about spiders? What would you like to learn about spiders? What have you learned about spiders by reading books together? How many different types of spiders can you name?
How to encourage your kids to to write:
Preschool/Kindergarten – discuss the answer(s) out loud first and write the answer down for him/her leaving one word for him/her to write out himself/herself with your help. You could also encourage him/her to draw a picture as well.
Early Grade School – have your child either write out the answer himself/herself (encourage phonetic spelling) without your help, or offer to help with spelling each word out loud one word at a time.
Grade School – have your child write a sentence or two on his/her own and then read over and discuss the response. (You decide whether to correct the spelling or not)
Older Child – have your child write a longer response (paragraph).
As A Challenge – instead of a question ask your older child to write a story or poem about spiders.
Copyright 2015. Family Theme Days. All rights reserved.
The library is a great chance for an outing with the kids.
Start by raiding your child’s bookshelves to find any books with spiders in them.
Then, go to the library to find books about spiders from both fiction and nonfiction to have already on hand for your theme day.
Many libraries allow you to go online and search for titles based on subject (Search for “spiders” under “Children’s books”). Reserve them if you can to save time.
I've found a bunch of good ones that are listed below.