Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Three Little Fish and the Big Bad Shark

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I'm thinking it's time for a summer themed activity!  There are several variations of the "Three Little Pigs" that I love, but I think my favorite is "The Three Little Fish And The Big Bad Shark" by Ken Geist and Julia Gorton.  This book is probably most appropriate for preschool and kindergarten.

In this story, the three fish build houses out of seaweed, sand, and a sunken boat.  If you know the story of the Three Pigs, you can pretty much guess how this one unfolds.  Instead of huffing and puffing, the shark munches, crunches, and smashes down the first two houses.  In a clever twist, when the shark tries to munch and crunch the boat house, all of his teeth fall out! :) 

Usually when I use this story, I review the three pigs with the kids.  Then I explain that this story is similar and ask them to guess what materials the fish might use to build their houses.  I then tell them that the fish use seaweed, sand, and an old boat made of wood.  At this point, I bring out tupperware containers filled with seaweed (or cooked wet spinach if I can't get my hands on actual seaweed ~ they haven't caught on to this trick yet), sand, and a wooden block.  We talk about how sturdy houses made of these materials would be.

After reading the story, I use stick puppets (I printed 3 fish and a shark from google images) and have the kids reenact the story.  They really get a kick out of playing the different roles, and I typically have kids fighting over who gets to be the shark.

I created this simple open ended game that can be used to target different IEP objectives.  You can get a copy here.  Make sure you print multiple copies.  Playing the game is simple.  Each child in the group has a turn answering a question, following a direction, saying a target word/sentence, etc.  After their turn, they select a card from a pile in the center of the table.  If they get a fish, they get to keep it.  If they get a shark, the shark eats all of their fish and they are returned to the pile (or taken out of game play, whichever you prefer).  The child with the most fish at the end of the game is the winner.

Hope you enjoy!

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