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Last updated Thursday, February 20, 2020

Author: Kevin Henkes
Illustrator: Kevin Henkes
Date of Publication: 1991
ISBN: 0688096999
Grade Level: 2nd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Aug. 2004

Synopsis: Until Chrysanthemum started kindergarten, she believed her parents when they said her name was perfect. But on the first day of school, Chrysanthemum begins to suspect that her name is far less than perfect, especially when her class dissolves into giggles upon hearing her name read aloud.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Do you like your name? Why or why not?
•  What are some funny names you have heard of? Why are they funny? Did the person who had the name think they were funny?
•  Is it nice to tease someone? What do you do if you see someone being teased?

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Why did the teasing make Chrysanthemum feel bad?
•  What would you have done if you had heard the other kids teasing her?
•  What made her feel better?
•  Do you think Chrysanthemum is a funny name?

Craft ideas:
•  Make a flower button or star necklace for a friend.
•  Make mouse finger puppets and give each an unusual name (doesn?t have to be a flower name)

Special activities:
•  Do the "dance of the flowers" or the dance of the Mack Trucks, or some other dance.

*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!