Students love guests

When I went to the school to read books to the students this week,
one student came out of the classroom.

He was holding his front. It looked like that he was getting ready to go to the
bathroom. But, he wanted to say, “Hello “and waved at me.
I told him, “Hurry! Go to the restroom first!”

At any school I visit, students like to have guests, because
they love to experience something different in their everyday life.
Otherwise, “Boring!”


Explain unfamiliar vocabularies before reading

I decided to read two Halloween stories
to the Kinder/First combination class.


First book: Teeny Tiny by Jill Bennett/Tommy dePaola

This book is timeless. Always students love this story.
It’s not scary. So, it’s perfect to read to my little ones.

I wrote some unfamiliar words for the students on the board,
because this story is based on the old English folklore.
Obviously, young American boys and girls would not know the old
English words.

I explained these words and showed the pictures before reading.

churchyard: graveyard
cupboard: usually with a wood door and shelves used for storage
bedclothes: sheets and blankets


Also, I asked the teacher to prepare Tommy dePaola’s recent
pictures through the computer screen and told students that he is
84 years old. And, he is still working mainly as an illustrator.
He used to write the stories, too.

He lives in Connecticut near New York city. Usually, there is
a U.S. map in the classroom, so, I could point the place out.

One student said, “My grandpa is 96 years old. He is still

I said,” Oh, I’m a little younger than him.”
“How old are you?”

OK, it’s a story time!


Students participation

Second book: FUNNYBONES by Janet and Allan Halberd

Original English poem is:

In a dark, dark wood there was a dark, dark house;
And in the dark, dark house there was a dark, dark room;
And in the dark, dark room there was a dark, dark cupboard;
And in the dark, dark cupboard there was a dark, dark shelf;
And on the dark, dark shelf there was a dark, dark box; And in the dark, dark box there was a....ghost!

I introduced the original poem first.

Then I read, FUNNYBONES.

After I read” there was a dark dark hill”
students continued, “there was a dark dark town.”
looking at pictures.

Maybe, it’s a good idea to write some words on the board,


Then, students can participate, easier.

I showed my son’s artwork which he made when he was
in elementary school. I wanted these students to draw a witch.


But, the teacher and I started to be concerned about parents’ reaction.
This is a catholic school not a public school. We decided just to show
my son’s artwork and then talked about Halloween’s haunted house,
a trick and treat, Halloween costumes and the history of Halloween.

Concern over Halloween
Even public schools, some parents do not want their children to
participate in Halloween program. Some parents think it’s a devil
worship or against their religion.

When I was working as a school librarian, always one or two
students did not participate when I was reading Halloween
stories. It’s against their religion. Those students were in the corner of the library
and read their own books quietly.


Peaceful Mr. & Mrs. Halloween decoration


Halloween books