Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day through Eric Carle’s Eyes

Carol Owen, Pam Buckland, Nick Bulloch

Students will:
Be able to use more detail about the sequence of events in a story.
Understand characteristics of the elements of art including colors, textures, and shapes
Create and produce a visual representation in the form of a book.


Painted Rice Paste Paper (done prior to lesson)
Address Labels
Stapler/some sort of binding material for books
Book: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day


Day One: 60 Minutes
1. Make sure the cover of the book is hidden from students so they can use their own creativity to create their color scheme for the Alexander story.
2. Make sure to have the rice paste paper presorted by color for the students to easily get what they need.
3. Remind that all stories have a sequence of events, much like a school day.
4. Making sure that the cover is hidden from the students, read the story to them stopping along the way to check for understanding and restate sequence of events using details from story. The students can also participate in the restating of the story’s sequence of events.
5. Once you have finished reading the story, separate the class into groups of 4 or 5 students.
6. Have each group retell the story into a beginning, middle, and ending. Each group will need to decide who will do what parts.
7. Model for the students how to create the scene from the story using the Eric Carle collage art method.
8. After modeling the collage method, show the teacher created pages (three little Pigs) and put them in the correct sequence. The teachers will model talking through the story correctly and incorrectly.
9. Once the teacher story is put in the correct sequence the students are free to begin working collaboratively in their groups to create their retell of the sequence of events in the Alexander Story to map out their ideas “storyboard”. (One per student as time allows)

Day Two: 70 Minutes (this day may take an extra day depending on the class)
1. Once “storyboard” is completed they may each work on their own piece of the sequence of events in the story using the Eric Carle Collage method and write a brief summary of the event taking place in the picture using the address labels. Allow at least 30-45 minutes for this. (may take longer)
2. Once students have completed their Eric Carle pages they will work collaboratively to sequence them correctly as they were read in the story.
3. Teachers will model how to present the work in a Dramatic Fashion (using teacher created work). Use the Tag Team Approach and line up behind one another. Each teacher will act out the scene/scenes they created. Then have the students practice acting out a scene from the teacher book 2-3 times.

Day Three: 60 Minutes
1. Review the acting out procedure with the class.(5 min)
2. Give the students 30 minutes to practice their story collaboratively.
3. Students will present their work by acting out the scenes they have created using a Tag Team approach. Have the students line up behind one another and each person acts out their event of the story according to the sequence.

Differentiation Approaches

1. Using the book each group has created will be our assessment tool.
2. We will also be circulating through the class during their work times to informally assess where we may need to add more teaching reinforcement.
3. The presentation will also be assessed based on level of participation.


Peer tutoring and support (teacher created groups), dictation to scribe if needed, teacher assistance for ELL

Follow Up and Extension Ideas

Display finished products in hallways outside of classrooms for everyone’s enjoyment.
Extension: Students create own Eric Carle style narrative and collage, then present to class in dramatic fashion or through another media (song, voice thread, PowerPoint, etc.)

Additional Details

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