More Information



Weston Woods
For 50 years Weston Woods Studios has been the principal innovator in the translation of picture books into the audiovisual media. Our adaptations are faithful reflections of classic children's picture books designed to motivate beginning, struggling, reluctant and limited English language proficient readers to WANT to read.

Chrysanthemum Discussion Guide

In Chrysanthemum, Chrysanthemum's only problem, once she reaches school age, seems to be her name which becomes the object of ridicule by jealous classmates.  Chrysanthemum begins to feel that her name is "absolutely dreadful" instead of "absolutely perfect" as it once was.  But with the help of supportive parents, and an especially wonderful music teacher, Chrysanthemum soon learns to appreciate the beauty and melodious sounds of her name again.


  • Children will explore the meaning of friendship.
  • Children will investigate feelings of envy.
  • Children will learn about the positive effects of kindness.

Before Reading Activities

Talk with children about their first names.  Ask:

  • What do you like about your name? Dislike?
  • Do you know why you were given this name? If so, what was the reason?
  • If you could have another name, what would it be? Why?

Share the book, Chrysanthemum, with children.  Then ask:

  • How did Chrysanthemum feel about her name in the beginning of the story?
  • What changed Chrysanthemum's feelings about her name?
  • What kinds of things did Chrysanthemum's parents tell her to help her feel better about what was happening at school?
  • What happened at school to help Chrysanthemum feel good about her name again?

After Reading Activities

Plan a "change your name day" at school.  Bring a variety of artificial flowers into the classroom.  Tell children the names of each.  Then let each child close his/her eyes and pick a flower from the bunch.  Tell children that the name of the flower will be their name for the day.  Children can keep their flower at their table or on their desk and wear a nametag with the flower name printed on it to remind everyone of their new name.  Throughout the day, have children refer to one another by their flower names.  By the end of the day, children will be surprised at how often their name is used.

Remind children of the way Chrysanthemum's parents supported her throughout the story.  Ask children to think about problems they may have had and the ways their parents or other family members were supportive or helped them resolve their problems.  Encourage children to describe what it feels like to have the support and understanding of others.  Later, have children try to think of ways they might be more helpful to or supportive of their family members or classmates.

Talk with children about the ways Chrysanthemum's classmates treated her before Miss Twinkle entered the story.  Ask:

  • Why do you think Chrysanthemum's classmates teased her about her name?
  • How do you think Chrysanthemum felt?
  • What would you have done if you were Chrysanthemum?
  • How do you think Chrysanthemum felt when Miss Twinkle told the class how much she loved the name "Chrysanthemum?"

Ask children to bring a snapshot of themselves from home.  Then help each child find out what his or her name means.  Attach each child's picture to a bulletin board, along with a picture or a few words about the meanings of their names.

Video Programs about school available from Weston Woods include:

Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes

Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman, illus. by Caroline Binch

The Day Jimmy's Boa Ate The Wash by Trinka Hakes Noble, illus. by Steven Kellogg

Emily's First 100 Days of School Rosemary Wells

Monty by James Stevenson

Open Wide - Tooth School Inside by Laurie Keller

Reading to Your Bunny by Rosemary Wells

Shrinking Violet by Cari Best, illus. by Giselle Potter

The Teacher from the Black Lagoon by Mike Thaler, illus. by Jared Lee

To Order: 

For Public Library sales call 800-243-5020 / For School Library sales call 800-621-1115

This guide may be photocopied for free distribution without restriction.

Copyright 2008 Weston Woods.

  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    The 7 Strengths Library: Blue Bunk (Grades 4-5)

    The 7 Strengths Library: Blue Bunk (Grades 4-5)

    The 7 Strengths Libraries
    A specialized collection that sparks thinking about the 7 Strengths:
    Belonging, Friendship, Kindness, Curiosity, Confidence, Courage, and Hope

    Help students become stronger independent readers and connect to texts in a new way.

    Students become readers when they are surrounded by relevant books that reflect their own interests and lives. Encouraging students to read independently begins with offering them a range of literature that they can connect with both emotionally and intellectually.
    With the 7 Strengths Libraries, your students can choose books they want to read and books they can read on their own. Each title was carefully selected to help your students engage with these authentic trade books through the lens of the 7 Strengths.

    Best practices for independent reading:

    The 7 Strengths Libraries offer students the opportunity to connect to texts as they build a clearer sense of their own identities and aspirations. Each collection offers:

    Books for independent reading practice, as part of your independent reading program.
    Age-appropriate fiction and nonfiction that connect the texts to students’ own lives
    Contemporary favorites and popular classics in multiple genres.
    Support for social-emotional learning with books about kindness, friendship, belonging, hope, and more.

    A Teacher Guide is included in each collection. Use this in concert with other best practices to ensure that independent reading is a valuable and effective part of each student’s growth in literacy. This is a useful professional resource that also includes strategies to build vocabulary, assist emerging bilinguals, and more. The Teacher Guide contains many tips to help inspire students to become engaged, reflective, and independent readers.

    See below for complete list of titles. Appropriate titles of equal value may be substituted if any of the listed titles are unavailable at shipping time.

    Title list:
    • Angel Child, Dragon Child
    • Bobby vs. Girls (Accidentally)
    • Bud, Not Buddy
    • Clara and Davie
    • Classroom Library Book Bin—4 Bins
    • Clemente!
    • Drita, My Homegirl
    • Earthquake Shock
    • Elephant Rescue
    • Farmer Will Allen and the Growing Table
    • Fifty Cents and a Dream
    • Fish Boy
    • Frederick Douglass
    • Go Mo'!
    • The Great Kapok Tree
    • Harvesting Hope
    • House of Robots
    • I Survived the Battle of Gettysburg, 1863
    • John, Paul, George & Ben
    • Killer Whale vs. Great White Shark
    • LaRue Across America
    • Make: Lots O' Bots
    • Malala Yousafzai
    • Martin's Big Words
    • More Than Anything Else
    • Ninth Ward
    • Old School
    • The One and Only Ivan
    • Pink and Say
    • Pocahontas
    • Poisonous Animals
    • The Principal from the Black Lagoon
    • Queen of the Track
    • Rain Forest Relay
    • Redwoods
    • Return of the Padawan
    • Ruth and the Green Book
    • Salsa Stories
    • Shark Lady
    • Smile
    • Superstars of Science
    • The Tale of Despereaux
    • The Talent Show from the Black Lagoon
    • That's Not Fair! / ¡No es justo!
    • Through My Eyes
    • The Tiger Rising
    • The Truth About Stacey
    • Ungifted
    • Using Your 7 Strengths Library
    • The Whale Who Won Hearts
    • Why Do Puppies Do That?
    • Wilma Unlimited

    $413.10 You save: 45%
    Paperback Book Collection | Grades 4-5
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    The 7 Strengths Library: Blue Bunk (Grades 4-5)
    Grades 4-5 $413.10
    Add To Cart
  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    Judy Moody Gets Famous!

    Judy Moody Gets Famous!

    Spirited, energetic and completely likeable, Judy Moody has a mood and insight for every occasion. "A delightful new character for beginning chapter book readers."—SLJ

    $4.46 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grade 3
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    Judy Moody Gets Famous!
    Grade 3 $4.46
    Add To Cart
Help | Privacy Policy




(Separate multiple email addresses with commas)

Check this box to send yourself a copy of the email.


Scholastic respects your privacy. We do not retain or distribute lists of email addresses.