Molly O’Malley and the Leprechaun by Duane Porter
June 23, 2009 in Creative Writing activities, Elementary Educators, Making Personal Connections, Middle Grade Novel, Porter, Duane, Research Ideas Tags: Buried Treasure Publishing, Duane Porter, Molly O'Malley, Molly O'Malley and the Leprechaun
*Middle-grade novel, fantasy
*An elementary-school-aged girl as a main character
*Rating: An interesting look at Ireland and Irish legends with a loveable main character.
Short, short summary: Molly O’Malley is going to stay with her Aunt Shannon in Ireland while her parents figure out some things at home. While at Aunt Shannon’s house, Molly discovers that leprechauns are not just Irish folklore when she meets Paddy and befriends him. Paddy has a problem; and once he realizes that Molly can be trusted, he asks her to help. Using some magic, Paddy and Molly soon discover exactly what is taking all the leprechaun’s gold and figure out a way to get the gold back to its rightful owners. In the meantime, Molly and Aunt Shannon develop a relationship while her parents are trying to work things out back home.
So, what do I do with this book?
1. Students can learn a lot about Ireland from this book. Using it as a starting point, they can also do some more of their own research on Ireland or Irish folklore. Students can make a poster, a display, a power point presentation, or even a bulletin board about some of the facts they learn about Ireland.
2. Molly is very trustworthy and honest, and this is why she gains the trust of these magical creatures when other humans aren’t able to. Ask students why Molly is so trustworthy. What is her ultimate goal? Is she after money? What does she want? Molly’s character shapes the story in this book. Ask students to write in their reading response journals about whether or not they think Molly would be a good friend if she was a real person. Ask them to use examples from the text to support their answers.
3. Before reading the chapter titled, “The Choice,” ask students what they think Molly should do with her last wish. Ask students to pretend they are Molly, and write a letter to Paddy explaining her difficult decision and what she must do with her last wish.
For more information on Molly O’Malley and the author, Duane Porter, check out Buried Treasure Publishing.