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The Remarkable Farkle Mcbride

Last updated Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Author: John Lithgow
Illustrator: C.F. Payne
Date of Publication: 2000
ISBN: 0689833407
Grade Level: 1st    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Mar. 2013

Synopsis: Young Farkle McBride is a musical genius: He plays the violin, the flute, the trombone, and the drums with incredible skill. But he's never satisfied: Something is missing.

Note to readers:
•  This is actor John Lithgow's first book for children. Many of the students may know him as the voice of Lord Farquaad in Shrek.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Do you play any instruments? Which ones?
•  Have you ever seen an orchestra perform?
•  What kind of music do you like?

•  Remarkable- when someone or something is extraordinary or unusual.
•  Fiddle- a string instrument that's similar to the violin.
•  Beseech- to beg or ask eagerly #Score- a written or printed form of music

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  What's so remarkable about Farkle?
•  Why does Farkle give up one instrument after another?
•  What finally satisfies Farkle?
•  What is it called when lots of different instruments play together?

Craft ideas:
•  Draw pictures of the various instruments Farkle plays. Imagine more instruments for Farkle to try out.
•  Create your own band or orchestra. What instrument do you play in the band? What is your band name? Create an advertisement for your band or orchestra.

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!