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Kindergarteners Study “The Mitten”

Kindergarteners in Lindsay Pietroski’s class actively participated in a dynamic reading of “The Mitten,” a Ukrainian tale, which has been told by multiple authors and in a number of ways. The students will listen to three versions, adapted by children’s authors Jan Brett, Alvin Tresselt, and Jim Aylesworth. During storytime for Brett’s version, the students sat in a circle surrounding a cloth mitten as big as the students! As Pietroski read the book, each student, who held a puppet of the animal characters in the book, placed their animal in the giant mitten, illustrating the action of the characters. The students especially enjoyed acting out the story’s conclusion, in which a tiny mouse’s whiskers tickle the bear, resulting in a sneeze that sends all of the animals flying out of the mitten. Pietroski said the story study incorporates a number of learning skills, in which the students make puppets, lace paper shoes, and create Venn diagrams. “This is also a story in contrast and comparison,” said Pietroski. “The students really learn to appreciate the different ways that one story element can be told.”