Curriculum Guide Counting Crows

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Cu rriculumG uideCountingCrowsByKathi AppeltIllustrated by RobDunlavey978-1-4424-2327-5 AtheneumOne, two, threecrows in a tree.THESE CROWS ARE HUNGRY and theirnumbers grow as they count themselvesand the tasty snacks they devour. Twelvecounting crows enjoy twelve chewy chips and twelve slimy snails,until one cat counts twelve crows’ tails! Off they fly, counting as they go, far away from that pesky cat.Children in grades K–2 will love counting these jaunty crows in their eye-catching red-and-whitestriped sweaters. Newbery Honor Book author and two-time National Book Award finalist Kathi Appeltknows a thing or two about hungry crows and brings these snacking bandits to life with her pitchperfect rhyme and kid-pleasing phrasing. “Writing a fresh counting rhyme calls for the poet to hear the numbers in a new way, andthat’s just what Appelt has done. She tweaks sequences, varies rhythms, and punctuatesher lines with piquant sound words.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review “Children can caw and cack, cackle and grack, along with the crows, following therhyming text throughout. . . . Something to crow about!” —Booklist, starred review “This is a real counting fest, as not only the crows, but the food they collect—berries,bugs and snacks—are fodder for the counting game and for improvingreading skills at the same time.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred reviewkathiappelt.comCommon Core State Standards addressed by the activities in this guide are noted throughout.For more information on the Common Core, visit

Discussion Questionsx What is the setting of the story? What information can you gather about thesetting from the illustrations? What information can you gather about thesetting from the text? CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.3; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.3x The crows are busy filling their bellies with all sorts of treats, but soon another character comesinto the story. What is the problem in the story? How do the crows deal with this problem? CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.3; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.3x Author Kathi Appelt uses some pretend words to tell the tale of the hungry crows. Hunt throughthe text and locate the pretend words the author has invented. Why do you think she used thesemade-up words in telling the story?CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.4; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.4; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.2.4x What words would you choose to describe the crows’ reaction when the cat appears? How dothe illustrations help the reader understand how the crows are feeling?CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.7; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.7; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.2.3x Look at the last illustration in the book. Based on the clues given in theartwork, describe how the cat might be feeling.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.7; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.7; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.2.3Activitiesx Imagine that a thirteenth crow joined the group of crows featured in Counting Crows, just after“twelve on a park bench, wing by wing.” What would this thirteenth crow feast on with his pals?Follow the pattern of the text to create a page for the thirteen crows. Your page should have fourlines of text with the second and fourth lines ending in rhyming words.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.10; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.10; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.2.6x Design a menu for the hungry counting crows. Use items described in the text on your menu. Adda few ideas of your own! Think of the name of the restaurant connected to your menu. Divideitems into appetizers, entrees, sides, and desserts. Include prices for your crow-friendly food.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.1; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.1; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.2.1x Recite the text of Counting Crows as a choral poem. Divide the text into different speakingparts. Decide which parts of the text will be recited chorally and which sections of the text willbe recited individually.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.10; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.10; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.2.6x List the number words used in Counting Crows. Keep a tally of how many times each number wordis used in the story. Write two true math statements about your data. Examples to ponder: Whichnumber word was used the most? What is the difference between how many times the word“twelve” was used and how many times the word “five” was used?CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3; CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4x Go on a rhyme hunt through the text. List pairs of words that rhyme in the story.Can you think of more words that also rhyme with the pairs that you found?Add these word-family rhymes to your list, too!CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.K.2.AThe discussion questions and activities in this guide were created by Leigh Courtney, Ph.D. She teaches in the Global Education program at a publicelementary school in San Diego, California. She holds both masters’ and doctoral degrees in education, with an emphasis on curriculum and instruction.Counting Crows Curriculum Guide Illustrations copyright 2015 by Rob Dunlavey. All rights reserved. This page may be photocopied for free distribution.

HOW MANY LEGS AREWALKING THROUGH COUNTING CROWS?Name:Find the page in the story featuring ten crows and ten crunchy crickets. How many crow legs are therealtogether on this page? How many cricket legs are there altogether? Use cubes and pictures to showyour solution in the box below. On the lines below, use number sentences and words to show yoursolution. At the bottom of the page, use your solutions to fill in the blanks in the sentence.CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.OA.A.2; CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.OA.A.1; CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.OA.A.1CUBES AND PICTURESCrow legsCricket legsNUMBER SENTENCES AND WORDSCrow legsCricket legsThere are crow legs on thepage and cricket legs.Counting Crows Curriculum Guide Illustrations copyright 2015 by Rob Dunlavey. All rights reserved. This page may be photocopied for free distribution.

TASTY NOUNS AND ADJECTIVESName:These counting crows are very hungry! Look through the book and identify the things(nouns) that the crows eat. Notice how each noun is made even more appealingwith the addition of a describing word (adjective) before it. In the chartbelow, list the adjectives and nouns that are used to describe the crows’feast in Counting Crows. CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.1.B; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.1.FADJECTIVENOUNExample: Roly-polybugsCounting Crows Curriculum Guide Illustrations copyright 2015 by Rob Dunlavey. All rights reserved. This page may be photocopied for free distribution.

A GALLERY of FEELINGSName:An author’s words can tell the reader how a character is feeling in a story. Illustrations can also giveclues about characters’ emotions. Create a gallery of illustrations that show how the charactersmight feel in different situations in Counting Crows. Read each situation below,select a good word to describe how the character/s might feel, and design anillustration of the character/s showing that feeling.CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.3; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.3Nine crows are on a telephone line.One crow falls off the line.One cat counts twelve crows’ tails.Word to describe the fallen crow’s feelings:Word to describe how the cat is feeling:Six crows make a nest of straw and sticks.One crow is eating spicy ants.Word to describe the crows’ feelings:Word to describe the crows’ feelings:This guide has been provided by Blue Slip Media for classroom, library, and reading group use. It may be reproduced in its entirety or excerpted for these purposes.Counting Crows Curriculum Guide Illustrations copyright 2015 by Rob Dunlavey. All rights reserved. This page may be photocopied for free distribution.

x Recite the text of Counting Crows as a choral poem. Divide the text into different speaking parts. Decide which parts of the text will be recited chorally and which sections of the text will be recited individually. CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.10; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.1.10; CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.

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