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    Sarah, Plain and Tall: Skylark

    Sarah, Plain and Tall: Skylark

    by Patricia MacLachlan

    Sarah takes Anna and Caleb back East, as a terrible drought hits the farm and Jacob stays behind to tend it. "As successful as the original."—Horn Book

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    Scholastic Book Guides: Sarah, Plain and Tall

    Scholastic Book Guides: Sarah, Plain and Tall

    Teaching with trade books is effective and manageable with Scholastic Book Guides—each guide has everything teachers need to build important skills for successful instruction in reading. Guides include:
    • Book summary and author information to build background and prior knowledge
    • Vocabulary-builders to help your students learn important word meanings for better comprehension
    • Discussion questions to deepen understanding, and build and check comprehension
    • Reproducible graphic organizers and writing activities to extend the meaning of the text
    • Effective management ideas for whole class, small group, and independent instruction.

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Sarah, Plain and Tall

Author: Patricia MacLachlan

Series: Sarah, Plain and Tall Saga (Book #1)

Interest Level:

Lexile Framework:

Grade Level Equivalent:

Guided Reading Level:


Classics, Historical Fiction

Blended Families, Pioneers, Changes and New Experiences, Death, Grief, Loss, Farm and Ranch Life

About This Book

Caleb and Anna have been living without a mother for a long time. In fact, Caleb doesn't even remember Mama, who died a day after he was born. Anna tells him that Papa and Mama sang every day, and now Papa doesn't sing at all. To remedy this situation, their father places an advertisement in a newspaper for a mail-order bride to come live with them in their prairie home.

All the way from Maine, a woman named Sarah answers the ad. Caleb wants to know if Sarah snores. Anna wants most of all to know if Sarah sings. Sarah makes plans to arrive, and writes, "I will come by train. I will wear a yellow bonnet. I am plain and tall."

So the family waits. In the spring, she comes with her cat named Seal, gray like the seals that swim near her seaside home...and a sea stone, which she eventually gives to Anna. Jacob, the father, teaches Sarah some skills for the farm, like driving a tractor. Everyone hopes she will stay — most of all Caleb and Anna — but Sarah misses the sea, her brother and her three old aunts.

One day Sarah takes the wagon alone to town, and Caleb and Anna worry. What if she doesn't come back?

Newbery Medal Winner, 1986

Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction for Children, 1986

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