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A Camping Spree with Mr. Magee



Last updated Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Author: Chris Van Dusen
Date of Publication: 2003
ISBN: 0811836037
Grade Level: Kindergarten    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Jul. 2015

Synopsis: Mr. Magee and his trusty dog, Dee, are enjoying a peaceful camping trip when all of a sudden they find themselves plunging down a mountain and teetering on the edge of a huge waterfall! How will they find their way out of this slippery situation? Chris Van Dusen, the creator of Down to the Sea with Mr. Magee, has filled this new adventure with charming illustrations and a playful, rhyming text. A fun read-aloud for children (and adults!) on campouts or snuggling at home!

Note to readers:
•  Vocabulary
•  wildlife--wild animals
•  brook--a small stream
•  knolls--a small hill or mound
•  spree--do something without restraint
•  embers--a small piece of burning wood

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Have you ever been camping?
•  What fun things would you do if you were camping?
•  Is Mr. Magee the man or the dog?
•  Who is driving the trailer?

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  What should you do to prevent bears from unhitching your car?
•  What can go wrong when you go camping?
•  What fun things do you like to do during the summer?
•  What fun things do you like to do or see outdoors?

Craft ideas:
•  Cut out stars and a moon to paste on your bedroom ceiling to simulate the sky and outdoor camping.
•  Cut out a trailer from construction paper. On one side draw the inside of the trailer with the kitchen, bathroom, bed etc... On the other side, draw the outside of the trailer.
•  Draw a picture of you and your family camping.

Special activities:
•  Play the 1-2-3 Look Camping Game--This is a very simple game that can include the entire group. This is the quiet version of "Scream Machine". Everyone closes their eyes and lowers their heads, the leader calls out 1-2-3-Look! As the leader calls "look," the campers look up at one specific person.Campers cannot change who they are looking at during each round. If that person is looking back at him/her, both players are out. If that person is looking at a different person, the campers put their heads back down and wait for the next call of "1-2-3 Look." Continue the game rapidly to close the circle and eventually you'll be left with two people and the game is over. It's not a game of skill, it's just fun!

*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!