Literature Based Kindergarten: Stellaluna

Primary Literature
  • Stellaluna by Janell Cannon, a sweet tale of a little bat who gets knocked out of her mother's arms and lands into a birds' nest. The bird family adopts her and Stellaluna tries her hardest to fit in. Eventually the birds and Stellaluna realize that they are quite different but friends none the less. The illustrations do an amazing so of find balance between realism and whimsicalness.

  • Vocabulary words to review.
    • clutched - hold on tightly
    • swooped - lower quickly 
    • shrieking- loud high cry
    • trembling- quick shaking movement, usually done when cold or scared
    • clambered- to climb with difficultly
    • anxious- worried/afaird

Complementary Literature
  • Nightsong by Ari Berk, a young bat wanders out of his cave alone for the first time. He soon discovers that his good sense/echolocation will serve as his guide. The prose and illustration of this book are exquisite  
  • Bats by Gail Gibbons, this nonfiction book gives simple details about bats, as well as, special traits of some bat species. 
  • Bat Loves the Night by Nicola Davies. Using delightful prose and appealing pencil sketches children are invited to follow a bat along for her nightly journey. Lots of facts are shared but in a way that doesn't feel too 'educational'. 

    Other Complementary Materials
    • Wild Kratts: "A Bat in the Brownies", not about fruit bats like, Stellaluna, but this cartoon does talk about the unnecessary fear people have of bats and the role they play in our ecosystem.
    • Kids Discover: Bats, we found this dvd at our library. It uses easy to understand terms to introduce children to the many characteristics and species of bats.

    Learning Activities/Games
    • Counting bats into number caves. The bats are made by stringing tulle ribbon though a star bead. The 'caves' are egg cartons with numbered stickers on the bottoms. 

    • Bat addition tray, we used the same bats to practice adding numbers up to 10. Mini Man would flip over two number tiles and then place the corresponding bats into each tray. He would count the bats then place the correct numeral/answer for the third tray and then count out the total number of bats. 

    • Venn Diagram comparing and contrasting bats and birds. 

    • Dramatic play with bat wings. These no sew bat wings were inspired by Little Inspiration. If, like me, you realize you are out of elastic, hair ties also work well. 

    mini man pretending to little lady's bat mommy

    • Stencil and cookie cutter bat prints

    • Feet bat.

    Supplies: card-stock, brown paint, star sponge, paint brush
    Step 1: press star sponge down on middle of paper
    Step 2: paint foot, then press it down over left and right star points. 
    You should have two star point up top for ears and one below for a tail. 

    Mini Man insisted on making Stellaluna and her Mommy. 

    If you have any fun bat themed ideas please share below.

    Please check our homeschooling page for more children's literature and unit ideas. 

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