My Little Story Corner

For the love of picture books

Silver Buttons: Teaching Notes

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9781406342246-1 Silver Buttons
Bob Graham

Silver Buttons: Question Time!  

Before Reading:  
Identify the title, author, illustrator, publisher, blurb.
Thinking about the title, what do you think this story is about? How do you think the title and cover art relate to each other?

During Reading.
Read the story without showing the pictures.
Allow children to imagine what the words are describing. Draw Jodie’s duck as you listen to the description.
Read again showing illustrations… Was that how you imagined it?

After Reading.
Revisit certain pages to discuss. How does each page connect with that of the next? How does Bob Graham show that the whole book occurs over one minute? What have Jodie and Jonathan been doing that day? Why is the soldier saying goodbye to his mum? What special things do you do with your grandparents? What kinds of communities, cultural, social groups can you identify?  

Silver Buttons: Learning Time!

– Write your own story called Silver Buttons. Use the blurb to begin your own story about what happens after Jonathan takes his first step. – Write a description of an image, have a partner draw it as you read it to them.
– Is Silver Buttons an imaginative, informative or persuasive text? Explore these text types and write your own about one of the scenes from the book. Eg. Information on how birds catch worms, or Persuasive text convincing your parents to take you to the beach.
– Make a list of things you, or others in the world, might do, or things that might happen, in the time it takes Jodie to draw her last silver button.
Discussion points and writing tasks adapted from:  

Read other books by Bob Graham:
Max, Let’s Get a Pup, How to Heal a Broken Wing, Tales from the Waterhole, A Bus Called Heaven, Vanilla Ice Cream, Jethro Byrd Fairy Child, Rose Meets Mr Wintergarten, Buffy, Crusher is Coming.  

– Search for and listen to the song “Merrily kiss the Quakers Wife”.
Find the tune here:
– Play musical instruments.
– Make your own musical instruments!
See ideas from Red Ted Art:

– Duration of time – What can you do in one minute? (draw a duck, make a paper aeroplane, etc)
How long does it take to…? (Jump over 10 cracks in the footpath, tie your shoelaces, sail a boat across the pond, etc.)
Extension: Graph the results from the time games. For example, create a bar graph showing the activities (jumping over cracks, tying shoelaces, sailing boats, etc, against the times).
– Study clock times, including seconds, minutes, and hours. Make a clock, and for more advanced students include minutes. Show 9.59 on your clock.
– Calendars- Draw 12 milestones from birth to now and make into a calendar. Mark special events in each month.
– Create a Milestone Timeline or wheel, showing different events in your life at certain ages.
– Seasons- Make a hanging mobile showing the months, weather conditions, appropriate clothes, and activities relevant to each season.

Art / Craft.
– Create a new scene that could be happening while Jonathan takes his first step. Illustrate with watercolours.
Can you see him in your picture? What perspective will the scene be viewed?
Think about colours to suit the mood, setting, character, time of day/year.
– Create a picture using buttons.
silver button button duck
– More things to do with buttons!
– Make Autumn leaf pictures.
– Make a boat that could be used to sail in water outdoors.
– Use sea shells to make a pretty windchime.
– Thinking about birds and their nests.

Outdoor play and discovery.
– Look for birds in your surroundings. Where do they nest? What do their feathers look like?
– Collect sticks and stones. Think of creative ways to use them (eg. Post them, make a nest, make a creature with glue, build a house, create an army of soldiers, etc).
– Go for a jog.
– Jump over cracks in the footpath.
– Play hopscotch or elastics.
– Go to the park.
– Water play. Sail boats in a fountain, play in a water table or bucket, pool, lake, puddle, etc.
– Play in the leaves.
– Visit the beach. Find seaweed, rock pools, shells, build sandcastles, tunnels, swim, etc.
– Nature play. Why nature play is important for children’s development:

Fine motor skills.
– Practice tying your shoe laces.
– Threading activities. Use beads, thread string through holes in cardboard shapes, tie different kinds of knots, sew, knit, crochet, make loom bands.

– What might you see at the bakery? Make your own bread, pastries, cookies, cakes, loaves etc.  

– Donate old clothes, blankets and toys to an op shop or other charity.
– Donate or buy merchandise that supports families of war veterans.  

– Study ducks. Research migration, breeding, habitat, food, etc. Make a poster, booklet, video etc about your research.
– Floating and sinking activities. Gather or make different kinds of boats, or other objects. Which do you think will sink? Which will float? Test them out, recording on a table as you go.

Silver Buttons
Available for purchase from Fishpond ($22.59 free shipping)

Silver Buttons
Available for purchase from Boomerang Books ($22.36 + $6.95 shipping per order)

Photography and lessons by Romi Sharp.
All sourced resources have been credited.
These are for personal or classroom use only, and not permitted for commercial use. 2014

Author: Romi Sharp

Qualified teacher, copywriter, reviewer, picture book writer and fanatic, acting publicist to the book stars, and constantly immersed in the world of children's literature. Founder of Books On Tour PR & Marketing, Just Write For Kids and My Little Story Corner.

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