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Do You Know What I'll Do?

Last updated Sunday, September 5, 2010

Author: Charlotte Zolotow
Illustrator: Javaka Steptoe
Date of Publication: 2008
ISBN: 006027879X
Grade Level: Kindergarten    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Jul. 2010

Synopsis: One day a little girl said to her little brother-Do you know what I'll do when the flowers grow again? I'll pick you a bunch and you'll be happy." So begins this lyric narrative, as a child describes her love for her brother by listing all the things she will do for him. Zolotow's text, originally illustrated by Garth Williams (HarperCollins, 1958), zeros in on that special kind of tenderness between siblings. Steptoe's mixed-media collages, made mostly from wood and paint, have a three-dimensional quality and project the emotion of the text. The artist gets precise detail with broad strokes, and his vibrant compositions leap from and move across the stark white spreads. The layout is simple but effective. The text is only slightly revised, replacing "movie" with "movies," and rephrasing the final question from "Do you know what I'll do when I grow up and am married?" to "-when I grow up and have a baby?" The answer to both is, "I'll bring you my baby to hug. Like this." Steptoe's artwork is decidedly modern, yet timeless in its depiction of an African-American family. It is familiar, yet fresh, just as Zolotow's voice was to the children's book scene over 50 years ago, and continues to be today. (from Amazon.com)

Note to readers:
•  This is a short book. Make sure you do the picture walk. Also, while reading the book, have the kids tell you what they would do before you read the author’s answer.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  What are the two people on the cover doing?
•  How do you think they are related?
•  Look at the back cover, what are they doing?
•  What will you do today after the reading clubs?

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Do you have brothers or sisters?
•  Do you play games with your brothers and sister?
•  Do you say something nice to your brothers or sisters?
•  Do you know what you’ll do when you grow up?
•  Do you know what you’ll do on the first day of summer vacation?

Craft ideas:
•  Have the kids draw a picture of themselves and their siblings together. For added fun, precut round circles for their faces; dresses, pants and tops in different colored construction paper. Have the kids glue your precut faces and clothing onto another piece of paper and then draw the hair, eyes, nose, mouth, arms, legs, shoes etc….
•  Draw a giant seashell or cloud shapes and have the kids color inside. Cut it out for them to take home.
•  Make bendable people using pipe cleaner and construction paper or foam. The kids can make the person their sibling or themselves. Cut out a doughnut-shape cutout for the head using construction paper or foam. Then thread a piece of pipe cleaner through the doughnut, making a V-shape. Starting at the bottom of the V, twist the ends together and stop in the middle. The untwisted parts will become the legs. Twist a short pipe cleaner tightly around the other pipe cleaner near head (this will form the person's arms). Lastly, add on googly eyes and hair made out of construction paper or foam.

*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!