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Puddles are for Jumping: Teaching Notes

puddles-are-for-jumpingPuddles are for Jumping, Kylie Dunstan (author, illus.), Windy Hollow Books, 2015.  
2015 Speech Pathology Australia Shortlisted Book of the Year (0-3 years)


The first thing you’ll notice upon picking up this book are the awesome illustrations. Each spread is entirely created with bright, cut and pasted paper characters and scenes in primary colours, suiting its wet weather theme and straightforward storyline. Kylie Dunstan cleverly takes her early primary-aged audience on this rainy adventure through the park, market, the neighbourhood and back home again to bed, simply by stating the actions in the words and demonstrating them in the pictures. Written in present tense, the short sentences are relatable and encourage readers to focus on how different objects can be utilised in the most enjoyable way possible.

“Bottoms are for wriggling, Sisters are for laughing!”
“Beds are for BOUNCING, Books are for sharing”.

‘Puddles are for Jumping’ is both visually and actively entertaining. This truly playful and joyous book is perfect for promoting experiences in the creative arts and movement areas, as well as supporting themes of friendship and citizenship.  

This review appeared first on the Boomerang Books Blog.  


Before Reading:

Look at the cover. Ask, Do you like to jump in puddles? What words can you use to describe different puddles? (small, big, shallow, deep, watery, muddy, etc).
Stand up and pretend to jump in puddles. Don’t forget to put your boots on!
What other things do you like to do in rainy weather? What else would you wear and take with you?  

During Reading:

Can you tell where the mum has taken the sisters? What can you see in the pictures?  

After Reading:

What were the places the characters in the story visited? How did they get there? Have you been to any of those places?
Do you remember some of the words used to describe the way they walked? Ate? Greeted people?
What did you notice about the illustrations?  


Identifying nouns and verbs.
Write the nouns (things, places, names) and verbs (doing words) found in the book in two separate columns.
Complete the Puddles are for Jumping Match Up sheet.
Puddles are for jumping match up

Play Puddle Jumping Game.
Use high frequency words, such as ‘are’, ‘for’, or a list of Magic Words.
For extension, make up your own verbs to follow on ‘Puddles are for…’, and have child jump on the word they say (eg. jumping, splashing, kicking, flicking, tapping, etc).
See the Bridie’s Boots Teaching Notes for these instructions and more weather-themed activities.

Read other books by Kylie Dunstan.
What are the similarities and differences between her writing style and illustrations?


Comprehension: Finish the sentence.
Use your own ‘verbs’ to complete, ‘Puddles are for…’, ‘Shops are for…’, ‘Skirts / Boots are for…’, ‘Beds are for…’, and so on.
Illustrate your sentence/s. (see Art / Craft Paper Collage activity).

Creative Writing.
Write your own story or class book about going on an outing. Using similar language and short sentences, what are the things you see on the way and how can it be used.
For example, going to school might include; “Bikes are for peddling, bags are for unpacking, friends are for giggling, teachers are for admiring ;), pencils are for sharpening, paths are for racing, books are for loving, and beds are for snoozing.”  


Graphs and Data. Outdoor Tallies.
Make a list of things you will see on your outing, things that can be counted. For example, number of puddles jumped in, number of trees climbed, number of dogs spotted, number of apples bought, etc.
Record the tally as you encounter each item on the list.
Formulate the results by graphing them as a picture graph. Item against number.
Discuss the results. Which had the most, least, same, how many more…, etc.  
Puddles are for Jumping Graph


Make a Fizzy Puddle.
Watch the puddle react with baking soda for an awesome fizzy effect!
From Simple Fun For Kids

The Water Cycle.
Choose from a cool selection of water cycle experiments, including evaporation, transpiration, precipitation, condensation!
From E is for Explore  

Art / Craft.

Rainbow Puddle Splash.
Use sidewalk chalk and puddle water to create a work of art!
From Lemon Lime Adventures

Winter Rain Watercolour Resist Painting.
Using white crayon and watercolours, create a stunning rainy day piece of art!
From Elementary Art Fun

Paper Collage Cut and Paste.
Choose different-coloured papers to create your own collage picture. Choose a scene from the book or make your own rainy day fun!  
Puddles are for jumping collage pic

Lessons and photography by Romi Sharp, BECS, Dip. Ed (Primary).
© My Little Story Corner 2015.
All sourced resources have been credited.
These lessons are for personal and classroom use only and are not permitted for commercial use without written consent.
This post contains affiliate links to Boomerang Books.
This review and lesson plans are not paid and are my own educated opinion.

Purchase Puddles are for Jumping.
Information about the author / illustrator of ‘Puddles are for Jumping’, Kylie Dunstan can be found here.

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Adventure Tour Bus Craft

9781922081322 Make your own Adventure Tour Bus  

Activity based on the picture book, Calpepper’s Place
Trudie Trewin (author)
Donna Gynell (illus.)
Windy Hollow Books, 2014.

Find a review of Calpepper’s Place (under C) here.  

Australian Curriculum Standards:
Responding to literature
Discuss characters and events in a range of literary texts and share personal responses to these texts, making connections with students’ own experiences (ACELT1582)
Creating literature
Retell familiar literary texts through performance, use of illustrations and images (ACELT1580)
Texts in context
Respond to texts drawn from a range of cultures and experiences (ACELY1655)
The ways the activities located in a place create its distinctive features (ACHGK007)
Represent data and the location of places and their features by constructing tables, plans and labelled maps (ACHGS009)  

Before Reading
Who do you think Calpepper is, and what might he do in this story? Has anyone been to the snow, beach, city, desert? Do you have a favourite place to be? Why might it be good to visit different places?
After Reading
Why do you think Calpepper wanted to leave his home at first? What did he learn along the way? What do you know about different locations in Australia? What state might you find the desert? Beaches? and so on. Do these regions change as the seasons change?  

Adventure Tour Bus Craft  

Small recycled cardboard box (we used a crackers ‘n cheese box)
Craft glue
Coloured pencils or textas
Pipe cleaners x2
Pom poms (optional)
Map of Australia (optional) Download here.  

1. Mark the windows with a texta on both sides of the box. Cut out windows and the bottom side (adult help required).
2. Mix half paint and half glue (make enough only to cover the box). Paint the box on each of the five sides.   
IMG_7639 IMG_7640
3. Once dry, decorate the bus with a sign and wheels (lights, etc).
4. To make the luggage rack on top: (adult help required)
Cut seven equal lengths of one pipe cleaner (about 3cm to 4cm each). Poke six tiny holes along the top of the bus (three to a long side). Place six of the cut pipe cleaners into each hole and fold down underneath. With the second pipe cleaner, starting on a corner, fold over each of the smaller pieces as you wrap the larger piece around forming a rectangular shape. Place the last small piece across the short end to complete the luggage rack.
Optional: place pom poms (or other small objects) in the luggage rack for suitcases.
5. Draw, colour and cut out characters to ride in the bus. Place inside and secure with a dab of glue (or sticky tape).
IMG_7641 IMG_7643
6. Extension:
Download and print a large map of Australia. Drive your Adventure Tour Bus, and with some pencils draw and label the types of regions Calpepper visited around the country (snowy mountains, city, beach, desert).
Label the states of Australia as you go.
List all the places in Australia you might find snow, beach, etc).  

Lesson and photography by Romi Sharp.
For personal and classroom use only, not permitted for commercial use.
© My Little Story Corner 2015