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Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth

Last updated Friday, April 5, 2019

Author: Oliver Jeffers
Date of Publication:
ISBN: 0399167897
Grade Level: 1st    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Apr. 2019

Synopsis: Insightfully sweet, with a gentle humor and poignancy, here is Oliver Jeffers' user's guide to life on Earth. He created it specially for his son, yet with a universality that embraces all children and their parents. Be it a complex view of our planet's terrain (bumpy, sharp, wet), a deep look at our place in space (it’s big), or a guide to all of humanity (don’t be fooled, we are all people), Oliver's signature wit and humor combine with a value system of kindness and tolerance to create a must-have book for parents.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  What interests you about Earth?
•  What are some things you know about Earth?
•  What do you think this book is about?
•  Would you want to live in space? Why or why not?


•  Milky Way - the galaxy containing the solar system including the sun; consists of millions of stars that can be seen as a diffuse band of light stretching across the night sky. Milky Way Galaxy, Milky Way System.
•  floating - drifting or suspended in water
•  different - not alike in character or quality
•  atmosphere - the whole mass of air surrounding the earth

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Why do you think volcanoes are so hot? What makes them hot?
•  What do you think it's like in space?
•  How can we take care of the earth?

Craft ideas:
•  Draw the earth using a paper plate or round piece of paper.
•  Draw a constellation on dark paper, like on the front inside cover of the book.
•  Make a rocket using cut outs and straws.
•  Check our craft ideas on Pinterest!

Special activities:
•  Sing "This land is your land"
•  Make animal sounds or move around like different types of animals.

*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!