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The Chicken Squad: The First Misadventure

Last updated Monday, February 4, 2019

Author: Doreen Cronin
Date of Publication:
ISBN: 1442496762
Grade Level: 3rd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Jan. 2019

Synopsis: They might be chicks, but they sure aren’t chicken, and they’re on a mission. And on this, their first (mis)adventure “in this delightful spinoff of the J.J. Tully series” (Kirkus Reviews), the Chicken Squad launches a galactic backyard expedition. Meet the Chicken Squad: Dirt, Sugar, Poppy, and Sweetie. These chicks are not your typical barnyard puffs of fluff, and they are not about to spend their days pecking chicken feed and chasing bugs. No sir, they’re too busy solving mysteries and fighting crime. So when Squirrel comes barreling into the chicken coop, the chicks know they’re about to get a case. But with his poor knowledge of shapes (“Big” is not a shape, Squirrel!) and utter fear of whatever it is that’s out there, the panicky Squirrel is NO HELP. Good thing these chicks are professionals. But even professionals get worried. Especially once they see that round, shiny, green, BIG thing in the yard. What if it’s a UFO full of aliens who want chickens as pets, or worse, dinner? It’s up to the Chicken Squad to crack a case that just might be out of this world.

Note to readers:
•  There are fun illustrations throughout the book, which make for quickly read chapters. Although, it may be too long to read all of it today.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  What is your nickname?
•  What is your specialty?
•  Do you have a responsibility?


•  Squad – a group of people who are involved in the same activity
•  Chicken Coop – a small house where mother chickens and their chicks are kept safe
•  Enormous – very great in size or amount
•  Frightening – to cause someone to be afraid
•  Gruff – low and rough voice

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  What do you think scared the squirrel?
•  What questions would you ask the squirrel to find out more about what scared him?

Craft ideas:
•  Draw something in your backyard that would scare a squirrel! What is in their own backyards or even on their way to school could provide fun ideas that could scare a squirrel or represent something from outer space.
•  Check our January craft ideas on Pinterest!

*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!