Lafcadio, the Lion Who Shot Back
by Shel Silverstein

Lafcadio, is my favorite read-aloud book. Every year when school starts, I pull out my well-worn copy of Lafcadio, dust it off, and read the first chapter to my excited third graders! They are hooked! They want me to continue but I stop for the day. I love to see the excitement build in their faces and how anxious they are to hear more. I believe it develops a love for reading in every child.

We spend the next few weeks with this wonderful read-aloud book and we never want it to end. But the ending comes and is quite a shocker!  It’s one of those books that leaves you hanging a bit. What a perfect opportunity to have have my students write about their version of what might happen next.

Students listen for unfamiliar words and we discuss the meaning and use the word in a different context. Books that provide new vocabulary for early learners is ideal. Charlotte’s Web is another vocabulary rich book to read.

Shel Silverstein is a brilliant writer and knows how to captivate his audience. It’s fun and interactive. I think it’s a must for every child and teacher’s library.

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