The hilarious Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey is a great resource for students to discuss themes like friendship, heroism, and imagination. Use these lesson plans for a fun way to help your students achieve Common Core State Standards.
George and Harold have entertained readers for years with The Captain Underpants series. Now they are back with even more hilarious antics in The Adventures of Ook and Gluk, Kung-Fu Cavemen From the Future.
Use these activities to encourage your students to think critically about the topics discussed in the series.
- Discuss what Master Wong means when he tells Ook and Gluk that “violence has no mind. If you truly want to set things right, you must walk the path of peace.”
- Cite examples from the text where Ook and Gluk choose to walk the path of peace. At what point in the story do Ook and Gluk realize the wisdom of Master Wong’s words?
- Debate whether or not this was the best advice for the cave boys to follow. Engage students in a discussion of Master Wong’s teachings and how these teachings might apply to their current life experiences.
Drama and Language Arts
- Have students work in groups to create a short play demonstrating how intelligence, not might, can be used to peacefully solve contemporary problems.
- When writing, have students assume the role of one of the main characters from The Adventures of Ook and Gluk, Kung-Fu Cavemen from the Future: Ook, Gluk, Master Wong, or Chief Goppernopper.
- Encourage students to “stay in character” as they create their plays. Be prepared for plenty of cavemonics (the author’s word for “caveman language”)!
- You may wish to provide the following scenarios as a starting point:
- At recess your friend has told you that you cannot join in the game because you are not “cool” enough to play.
- You have arrived at the playground to play basketball with a group of friends. You take a shot at the basket and miss. Someone starts to make fun of you.
- Your favorite toy is missing from your backpack. You notice a classmate appears to have one just like it.
- A classmate has invited you to sit with him/her at lunch, but only if you promise to permanently abandon the friend you usually sit near.
- Make copies of the students’ plays once they have finished writing.
- Have the students perform for one another. Consider inviting additional classes to view the performances so they can learn how conflicts can be resolved peacefully!
- After the performances, have each group translate one of the plays from cavemonics to modern-day English. Encourage students to edit for grammar, paying particular attention to pronouns and contractions. For a closer look at cavemonics, students should refer to pages 171-174 in The Adventures of Ook and Gluk, Kung-Fu Cavemen from the Future. Be sure to provide students with editing checklists and dictionaries. Encourage peer editing for clarity, spelling, and grammar.
Science and Language Arts
- Have partners work together to explore books in the library or use the KidRex search engine to conduct research on the following dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus Rex, Albertosaurus, and the Velociraptor.
- Have students work cooperatively to write a short paragraph about each dinosaur. Encourage students to include facts about the diet, adaptations, predators, time period, and appearance of each dinosaur.
- Have partnerships illustrate and label a diagram of each dinosaur.
- Although dinosaurs and cavemen did not coexist in real life, the author modeled Lily after real dinosaurs. Guide students to use what they have learned in their research to identify what type of dinosaur she might actually have been! Students should support their opinions with facts from their research and present their findings to the class.
Common Core State Standards
Key Ideas and Details
RL. 3.1 Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.
Craft and Structure
RL. 3.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from nonliteral language.
RI. 3.6 Distinguish their own point of view from that of the author of a text.
Speaking and Listening
Comprehension and Collaboration
SL. 3.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 3 topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas
SL. 3.4 Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.
SL. 3.6 Speak in complete sentences when appropriate to task and situation in order to provide requested detail or clarification. (See grade 3 Language standards 1 and 3 here for specific expectations.)
Text Types and Purposes
W. 3.1 Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons.
W. 3.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge
W. 3.7 Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.