Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
- Grades: PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5
About this book
I use Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day as a read-aloud for discussion about how everyone has bad days and that we need to learn how to deal with them. With this lesson, students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes. The students love listening to the story and hearing themselves on their own podcast.
- Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst
- pencils and paper for each student
Set Up and Prepare
Have the students predict from the cover of the book what the story will be about.
Have the students write about a time when they had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day at school. What happened? Did the day get better? How did it change? Who helped make it better?
Have the students decide where they would move? Why did they choose that place? Would moving there solve their problem?
Have the students illustrate their terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day with a detailed pencil drawing.
Supporting All Learners
Use a world map to find Australia and other places students may decide they would move to on their bad day.
Create a class rap about the Class's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day at School. On a Mac, use GarageBand to create a podcast. On a PC use Audacity for recording. Each student records a part of their terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. Have them create a chorus verse that will be said after every few recordings. After the voices are recorded, add a beat or music to the rap.
"Julie wore her pajamas to school because she thought that it was Pajama Day. But it wasn't Pajama Day."
"Max fell off the monkey bars, broke his pencil lead three times and forgot the word monkey when he was reading out loud to the class."
"It was a stressful, awful, dreadful, very rotten day at school. We think we will move to India."
Enhance the podcast by adding photos or their scanned drawings.
If a computer isn't available, a recording could be made with a tape recorder or with an iPod and a voice recorder attached.
The podcast can be shared online through iWeb on a Mac or shared with other classes through the school server. Consult with your technology support person about how to do this.
GarageBand video tutorial - http://www.apple.com/ilife/tutorials/garageband/gb3-1.html
Audacity for Windows or Mac - http://audacity.sourceforge.net/download/
Audacity Tutorials - http://audacity.sourceforge.net/help/tutorials