Miss Donley's Second Grade Class
Ellsworth Elementary School
Ellsworth, Kansas
The Tale of Despereaux & House Mouse, Senate Mouse

Here in second grade we were so excited to find out that Miss Donley had signed us up for yet another fun internet project of Mrs. Silverman's. The first thing that Miss Donley did was go to our library and she brought some mice books back to our classroom so we could decide which books we would want to focus on for our Mouse Tales project. She also talked to our school librarian and we then had even more books checked out for us choose from! Earlier we had gone to the computer lab with our teacher and our school librarian and we learned how to use Athena, our school library search engine, to find books on our own in the library. The search term that we used was mouse and mice. This allowed us to also find the mice books in the library and several of us decided after starting this project that we wanted to read even more mouse tales than what Miss Donley had checked out. At any rate, after some discussion and many good books read to us and by us, we decided to focus our Mouse Tales project in on two books. These books were The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo and House Mouse, Senate Mouse written and illustrated by Peter and Cheryl Barnes.

For The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo, Miss Donley checked out the book and the book on tape. Miss Donley had us listen to the book on tape and we stopped at various points throughout the book and discussed the book and the various components of this story. We also used this book to talk at length about active listening and mental images. Miss Donley is a big fan of the book Reading with Meaning by Debbie Miller and took some of the mental image ideas she found in this book to make the forms that we used for this project. We used these forms to draw out and write about our mental images at various points throughout the story as determined by Miss Donley.

Feel Free to Download (PDF File)

We weren't quite finished with the book by the deadline of this project but Miss Donley also plans on having us use Kidspiration to express our final thoughts on this book and do our final mental image.

We also spent time with the book House Mouse, Senate Mouse written and illustrated by Peter and Cheryl Barnes. This book was first read to us in library class and then reread to us and discussed in class by Miss Donley. This book gave us a great opportunity to talk about rhyming and to learn more about our government on the national, state, and local levels. In fact, we thought that the second grade class in the story had such a great idea of writing to their lawmakers that we decided to write to one of ours as well! One of our current Kansas House of Representatives is a former student of our school and we decided to practice our letter writing skills to write to him and to share with him what we had learned about government and also to suggest ideas for some new laws. We also learned that after his session is over in April he is going to come visit our classroom and tell us about his job and what it is like to be our representative helping to make laws for us. We loved writing these letters and are eagerly anticipating his visit in the spring!

Overall, we loved this Mouse Tales project and are sad to see it end! It was simply mousenificent! Thanks Mrs. Silverman for providing another fun and exciting internet project for us in second grade!

Kansas Curricular Second Grade Standards, Benchmarks, and Indicators addressed through Mouse Tales project

1.1.3. The student categorizes onsets and rimes in spoken syllables.
1.4.3. The student uses pictures, content, and prior knowledge to make predictions.
1.4.7. The student sequences events according to basic story structure of beginning, middle, and end.
1.4.8. The student compares and contrasts information (e.g., topics, characters) between texts and within a single text.
1.4.9. The student identifies cause-effect relationships in narrative and expository texts.
1.4. 10. The student retells or determines important events and main ideas from narrative and expository texts.
2.1.1. The student identifies and describes character(s) in literature.
 2.1.2. The student identifies and describes setting.
 2.1.3. The student retells the plot of a story.

1.3.1. The student chooses and writes several sentences or phrases about one clear idea.
1.3.6. The student begins to use a variety of prewriting strategies.
1.3.8. The students writes a piece in sequential order.
1.3.9. The student begins to use simple transitions.
1.3.10. The student begins to write with an awareness of purpose and audience.
1.3.12. The student chooses words that are reasonably accurate and makes the message clear.
1.3.15. The student capitalizes the beginning of a sentence and uses correct punctuation.
1.3.16. The student uses correct grammar when writing sentences or phrases.

 Social Studies - Civics-Government
 1.1. The student recognizes that rules provide order and safety and benefit all school and community members.
 3.1. The student recognizes that the United States Constitution is a written plan for the rules of government 4.1. The student discusses how rights and privileges change over time and in different situations.

National Educational Technology Standards for Students (NETS) addressed through Mouse Tales project
 *Students use productivity tools to collaborate in constructing technology-enhanced models, preparing publications, and producing other creative works.
 * Students develop positive attitudes toward technology uses that support lifelong learning, collaboration, personal pursuits, and productivity.
* Students use telecommunications to collaborate, publish, interact with peers, experts, and other audiences.

�  Susan Silverman2006