Book Buddies: “Big Nate In a Class By Himself” by Lincoln Peirce

A special club for elementary school students with discussions, games, crafts and a snack. Newcomers always welcome!

My colleague, Mindy is the lead on this program with my assistance. She develops questions and we collaborate to create awesome games and crafts. It’s a very rewarding program.bignate

Book Buddies follow a general outline, specialized for each book:

Big Nate Outline

  1. Opening: Have all of the kids sign in, introduce ourselves, go over the rules: be respectful, stay on topic
  2. Opener: Fortune Cookies, what kind of interesting ones have you had? Have you had any that came true? Show a fortune.
  3. Discuss the Book
  4. Vote: Who liked it? Thumbs up for Yes, Thumbs Down for no- Thumbs middle for kinda
  5. Show additional books by Pierce
  6. Game: Green Bean Toss
  7. Snack, while we read a chapter from the next selection
  8. Craft – Watch Youtube video of Pierce drawing Nate, and create our own comics
  9. Clean Up.

Discuss the Book

This part of the program gives the kids an opportunity to discuss interesting ideas and topics from the book in a circle style. Mindy came up with this wonderful list of questions pulling from resources on the web:

  1. What was your worst day ever at school like?
  2. Nate has high hopes for future greatness. He lists four possible areas of greaness ahead. What areas do you think you would excel at? (Soccer, Rock Band, Cartoonist, Table Football)
  3. Nate is the class clown. Do you have an extra-funny kids in your class? Are they well liked? What kind of humor isn’t popular?
  4. Why does Nate get all of his detentions? Do you think he deserved them?
    • Insolence – a sheet of nicknames for his teacher
    • Being disruptive in class— insulting a classmate “Gina should keep her big fat mouth shut
    • 😦 – Trying to break into the art display case to put in his own art
    • Green bean incident– making a mess that the principle tripped on
    • No respect for teacher- putting on the coaches shorts and stuffing them with towels
    • Fighting with his math teacher to keep an unfinished pop quiz (check the back next time!)
    • Laughing at his science teacher when his pen leaks onto his shirt
  5. Do you think Big Nate was destined by the fortune cookie to “surpass all others”? Do you think he did?
  6. How did you like the format of the book? Do you think the pictures added anything to it?

Game: Green Bean Toss

Kids work in teams of two, throwing green beans into buckets that their teammate is holding while sitting on their knees. Refers to the part in the book where Nate attempts to break the world record for eating greenbeans.

photo(1) photo(2)

Craft – Watch YouTube video of Pierce drawing Nate, and create our own comics

photoMy example:

Big Nate and the Librarian

Comic Book Templates Provided:

Comic Book Templates

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