Don’t forget to make use of the Teaching Points at the end of the book.
Here are some additional ideas for using The Secret Life of Mitch Spinach in the classroom. Each idea can not only be adapted to any grade level from PK-3rd grade but also be combined to span the disciplines.
Reading in Context: Print vocabulary list. Have children guess the meaning from the context of the story, compare answers, and then write an agreed-upon definition on the board for them to copy. Have a dictionary handy to look up words children don’t know.
Reading Comprehension Questions: Print questions here.
Making Predictions. Read the story aloud and stop on page 18. Ask children the following questions while looking at pages 17 and 18:
- Who do you think has made this mess?
- What clues in the text of the story have led you to reach this conclusion?
- What clues can you spot in the illustration on page 18?
Still Life Lesson:
Draw fruits and vegetables that children bring in from home. The colors of fruits and vegetables actually denote their health benefits.
- = Carotene
- = Lycopene
- = Lutein
Carotenoids give plants beautiful colors and designate nutrients that protect against disease. When you build your plate from a rainbow of colors you build a body protective against diseases such as diabetes and cancer. In fact blood levels of lutein (found in green foods along with folate and hundreds of other critical lifespan-enhancing nutrients) give a accurate indication of one’s risk of a heart attack or major illness.
Be sure to click on the PARENTS tab for an excerpt from Disease Proof Your Child to learn more about childhood nutrition.