Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Last Laughs: Animal Epitaphs

I came across a book a while back, and I decided to try it with my eighth graders.  It is called Last Laughs: Animal Epitaphs by J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen.  When I read it at home one morning after my own children left for school, I was laughing aloud so much the dog got up and joined me.  The illustrations are a wonderful addition to the awesome play on words.

Before reading the book to my students, I had them brainstorm about animals and some common characteristics associated with the animal(s) they selected.  I was hoping this would help them write their own humorous animal epitaph.  The first couple of epitaphs went over like a lead balloon; however, each subsequent reading was met with more and more laughter (and moans).  The students created a sequel to the book.  Many of them were very worthy!  It definately was a light-hearted exercise that I will probably repeat in the future.

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