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Mrs. Gursky's First Grade Class
Brentwood Elementary School
Brentwood, California

Our class read It's Not Easy Being a Bunny by Marilyn Sadler. It's a story about a bunny named P.J. who decided that he no longer wanted to be a bunny. He tried to be a bear, a bird, a beaver, a pig, a moose, a possum, and even a skunk. P.J. soon learned that other animals had hard things to deal with too. He finally decided that he really did want to be a bunny after all!

We brainstormed animals that were not in the story and discussed what would be hard about being that animal. Each child selected a different animal. Each student then typed, using Claris Works, a speech bubble with a sentence saying what would be hard about being the animal they had selected. The children had to enlarge the print to 72, print it out, and save the document to a disk. They then cut around their words to make a speech bubble. They painted a picture of their animal, cut it out and glued it onto a class mural.

On another day we returned to the computer lab. The children used KidPix to paint their animals. They had to save their illustrations to disk. Then they opened their original speech bubble documents, reduced to print size to 24 and imported their KidPix illustrations into their documents. We then printed out each page and made a class book.

On the last day of this 4 day project, the children wrote about what was hard about being a kid. They also made a KidPix illustration of themselves. This last writing project was used to assess the students' independent writing on a topic related to the project and their ability to illustrate using KidPix and to save their work to a disk..

I have to jump all day with my baby in my pouch.

by Jessica

I have a hard time getting food because my nose is in the way.

By James

It would be hard to be a worm because I'm slimy.

by Lisa

It is hard to be an elephant because you have to pick up stuff.

By Malon


It is not easy to be a kid because it is hard to clean the table. It's hard to read books. It's hard to ride my bike with two wheels. When I eat it is hard to chew food because my tooth is loose. When my mom and dad send me to the store I get tired.
by Cynthia


It is not easy to be a kid because sometimes your parents force you to wash the dishes. Next it's breakfast. Next you go to school. Next you read. Next you go home. Then I have to clean my room.
By Justin


It is not easy to be a kid because you have to clean your room. Then you have to do your homework. Another thing you have to do is your chores. Another thing you have to do is obey your parents.
By Kelli


It is not easy to be a kid because I can't do whatever I want to do. It is hard not to boss people around. It is hard to clean my room. It is hard to do the dishes. It is hard to jump rope when you're just learning.
By Jilly

We made a classroom mural. Pictures were painted with water colors. The children made their own speech bubbles. They typed in Claris Works using a font size of 72. They printed their documents. Then they made a speech bubble shape around their words with a black marker. They cut them out and added them to our mural with their animal.

mural.jpg (33230 bytes)

This lesson covers The Brentwood School District's Standard:

Students write clear and choherent sentences and paragraphs that develop a central idea.


The students' writing and computer skills were assessed on the fourth and final day of this project. Independently, the students wrote about what is hard about being a child. They also demonstrated their computer competency by illustrating in KidPix and saving their work to disk.