Saturday, July 28, 2012

Read-Alouds for Teaching Multiple Perspectives

I find myself making lots of lists this summer. Our curriculum is changing so I can't do a lot of actual planning yet by objectives; but I can sort out the books I'm going to use to teach concepts like Depth and Complexity. One of our icons is Multiple Perspectives-we use this one quite often in Kinder. So often, in fact, it's hard to break them of the habit of beginning a piece of writing with: "if I were a....".  :)

 Here are some that I use:

One of those I found totally by accident. I was already reading the book to the kids one day and realized, it's told from the perspective of a house. Lots of things matter to that little house that wouldn't matter to us, but some of it's worries are the same.

Told from the perspective of the pea--not fun to be stuck under a bazillion mattresses!

I know you've probably already heard of this one, but included it anyway-fairy tale told from the wolf's side.

Perspective you may not think about often-a tractor living on a farm. He has a happy life until he's replaced by a new state-of-the-art version.

One of my favorite chapter read-alouds. Every child wonders what their stuffed animals do when they leave the room. These characters misunderstand things all the time because of their perspective.

Told completely from the point of view of the dog who is trying to find his boy owner. Lots of references to how things/people smell-not exactly how we usually describe people.

A perspective of school from the class pet. Fire alarms, homework--all a mystery to this little hamster. It's a series, so if your kids like the first one....

Yes, I know gross title (which probably means you will get the kids attention right away). Life from the view of 2 cats-from the moment they are born they see the world differently than we do. Humans are very strange to them.The title comes from a "game" they hear the kids in their family playing when they are fighting over a toy. "It's mine", "is not", "is too", "s'not", "s'too". You get the drift.

Any of these titles are a great model for putting yourself in the shoes of someone or something else and thinking about what that perspective would be. Especially with little ones, that's a hard task because you know the world revolves around them-they haven't had to think that way before! :)


  1. I love this post! The Little House is one of my all time favorites. I just included it in a post yesterday! My copy is probably 60 years old!!
    Owl Things First

    1. My copy is pretty old too-I think it came with my class at the old school! :) Thanks for commenting!

  2. That's a great list- I love The Little House, and I had never thought of using it for perspective. And you know another good chapter read-aloud? Bunnicula by James Howe. And he does an excellent job of expressing both cat and dog behaviors in the dialogue.
    The Meek Moose

    1. Yes you're right! Bunnicula is also a great one for multiple perspectives and the kids love it! We took our kids to see the play of it one year and it was hilarious-they adapted it so well! Thank you for that suggestion! :)

  3. Your post made me think of the book Hey Little Ant by Philip and Hannah Hoose - it keeps alternating between the perspective of a kids about to step on an ant, and the ant. Fabulous book.

    rubber boots and elf shoes

    1. I don't think I know that story-I'll have to look for it-sounds perfect for our insect unit! Thank you Sandi! :)