by Peggy Parish
Reading Level 1.9
|Setting:||Todd's house and the animal shelter|
|Characters:||Todd, his mother, his father, and Mrs. Star at the shelter|
|Plot:||Choosing a new pet at the animal shelter is not as easy as one might think.|
|Solution:||Todd really doesn't decide which cat to take home—the cat decides for him.|
|Summary:||It is Todd's birthday, and all he really cares about is the present he will get when the family visits the animal shelter. When they get to the shelter, Mrs. Star shows them all the cats. Todd has a really hard time making a choice between the cute, little kittens and a scruffy-looking cat with a crooked tail that has been there for a month. Mrs. Star explains that they can't keep all the cats indefinitely. Scruffy actually chooses Todd because they need each other.|
Ask the group the following questions: How many of you have pets? How many found your pet at an animal shelter? Why do we need animal shelters? How many of you have cats? Have a few children tell about their experience at an animal shelter.
Show the first picture in the book of Todd running into the kitchen and his mom holding a stack of pancakes with a candle on them. Ask students to predict what this picture might have to do with the picture on the cover of the book.
Ask students to do the following exercise: Think about the day you first saw your pet. How did you feel? What did you do to get ready for your pet? Picture rows and rows of cages with cats in them. That is what an animal shelter would look like.
Ask students where they would look to find a nonfiction book about how to care for kittens and cats. Ask what term would give them the best chance to find the right book: [cats] or [cat care]?