Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories

Last updated Friday, April 24, 2015

Author: Dr. Seuss
Date of Publication: 1958
ISBN: 0394800877
Grade Level: 2nd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: May 2015

Synopsis: Dr. Seuss presents three modern fables in the rhyming favorite Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories. The collection features tales about greed ("Yertle the Turtle"), vanity ("Gertrude McFuzz"), and pride ("The Big Brag"). In no other book does a small burp have such political importance! Yet again, Dr. Seuss proves that he and classic picture books go hand in hand.

Note to readers:
•  This book contains 3 separate stories. The guide below is for the first story, Yertle the Turtle.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Have you ever seen a turtle? Where?
•  What do you think this story is about?
•  Have you read other Dr. Seuss books?
•  Frown-a serious facial expression that usually shows anger, displeasure, or concentration
•  Throne-the special chair for a king or queen
•  Thundered-a loud noise that sounds like thunder
•  Bellowed-to shout in a deep voice
•  Brayed-to speak or laugh in a very loud and unpleasant way
•  Perched-to sit on or be on something high

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Who is Yertle?
•  What was Yertle's problem?
•  How did Yertle solve his problem?
•  What was Yertle now king of?
•  How do you think the other turtles felt?
•  How did Yertle treat the turtles? Was it right?
•  What happened to Yertle's new throne? Now what is he king of?

Craft ideas:
•  Make a turtle. Decorate the back of a paper plate/bowl that will be the shell. Then using green construction paper cut out a head, 2 arms, 2 legs, and a tail to glue onto the paper plate/bowl.
•  Make a Mother's Day card.

*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!