Out of This World Literacy : Cooking Up a Caring Classroom
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Cooking Up a Caring Classroom

Hello Friends!

I have teamed up with some other great bloggers to share some incredible books written by Julia Cook.  You can check out all her books on her website by clicking here.

Click on this image to link to other great blog posts about Julia Cook Books!
One of my absolute favorite Julia Cook Books is My Mouth is a Volcano.  

Book Summary:

Louis is a typical boy, who loves to share his important thoughts.  But, Louis has a big problem.  He often interrupts others to share his important thoughts.  Louis gets in trouble for interrupting others at school, day care, and at home.  

Louis finally realizes how much interrupting others is a problem when a few students in his class interrupt Louis!  How dare those boys and girls interrupt his important thoughts!?  Louis' mom points out that how Louis felt when he was interrupted was exactly how he was making others feel himself.

Julia Cook does an amazing job teaching students a practical, concrete way to stop themselves from interrupting others.  This book can be used from Kindergarten through middle school to help students understand the importance of not interrupting others!

The Best Parts of this Book:

What makes this book so special is the way Ms. Cook describes the physical way in which Louis feels right before he interrupts.  Kids can easily relate to the feelings Louis has right before he blurts out his important words.  We all feel like our words are important, and they are!  But, just like Louis, we all need to learn the appropriate time to share our words.

Ms. Cook then describes a practical way to stop oneself from interrupting.  Louis learns to bite down on his tongue and breath the words out through his nose.  This keeps Louis from interrupting.  He learns to wait until it is his turn to talk.

Ideas for the Classroom:

I have read this book in my classroom during the first few weeks of school for a few years.  Even my fifth graders were engaged in the story!  It is an excellent mentor text that helps set classroom expectations.

During the story, I stop and ask my students if they have ever been a Louis.  I tell them, be honest!  Almost everyone raises their hand!

I ask students to turn and talk with a neighbor about a time they have been a Louis.  Then I ask a few of the students to share a few times they have been like Louis.

We talk about how all our words are important.  I tell students that I really want to listen to everything they have to say.  But, it is impossible to listen when more than one person is trying to talk to me at once.

And, sometimes we run out of time in class.  Not everyone can share their very important words with the entire class.  

We finish reading the story of Louis.  We practice biting our tongues and breathing through our nose to keep from interrupting.

After reading, I ask students to sign an interrupting contract.  Please enjoy this free resource by clicking the image below.

Another strategy I introduce to my students after reading is the idea of writing down their very important words.  I set a stack of index cards next to a teacher mailbox.  I let students know they can write me a message of their very important words any time we run out of class time.  I will read their important words after school every day.

My students LOVE this!  It makes them feel special just knowing that I really care about everything they have to say.

I hope you all enjoy this blog hop and get some great ideas for your classrooms!  I would LOVE to hear how you are using some of Julia Cook's books as well.  I welcome all your comments below.

Best Wishes!!

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  1. I LOVE the idea of an interrupting contract ... brilliant!


    1. Thanks! I hope it works with your students as much as it did with mine! :)

  2. I am so glad to see someone else talking about Julia Cook books! I am a HUGE proponent of teaching Boys Town Social Skills and her books are the absolute best way to do that because they are written directly for them. They always work like magic! In fact, I have a DonorsChoose project right now to get a set of her books to use with my students!

  3. Thanks for sharing Miss Martin. There is something so amazing about the way Julia presents the information to the kids. It's like they can immediately apply the lesson to their lives. I'm so grateful for all her books too!