Madlenka Soccer Star by Peter Sis
December 12, 2011 in Elementary Educators, Making Personal Connections, Personal Connections, Picture Book, Preschool to 1st grade teachers, Reading Skills, Shared Writing, Sis Peter Tags: books about soccer, girls and sports, multicultura, picture book about sports
*Picture book, contemporary fiction for preschoolers through second graders
*Young girl as main character
*Rating: I liked the beginning of Madlenka Soccer Star a little more than the ending, but all in all, it is a cute book. It’s GREAT for any child who loves soccer or who gets into international games when they are on. It was released in 2010 in time for World Cup!
Short, short summary: Madlenka loves soccer and sets out one day in her neighborhood with her soccer ball. She is looking for someone to play soccer with–but you know, the mailbox is too slow, and the dog wants to keep the ball. She finally finds her friend Cleopatra, and they are joined by the other kids who also love soccer. A big soccer game with children from many nationalities occurs. At the end of the book Peter Sis includes how soccer is said/written in many countries around the world (kids always dig this kind of thing) and a history of soccer.
So what do I do with this book?
1. Make a stickee note graph with the title, “What is your favorite sport?” Students write on a stickee note their favorite sport. (If you want to limit the number of choices, then have them choose popular ones from a list with “other” as a choice also.) On the chalkboard, write the choices along the bottom (you are creating a bar graph). Students come up one by one and place their stickee notes above their favorite sport. Students place them so it creates a bar. Once everyone has placed their stickee note, you can ask questions such as, “Which is the most popular?” “Which is the least?” “How many more students like soccer than baseball?”
2. Ask students to think of other objects or animals in a neighborhood that Madlenka could play soccer with. Use their imagination like she does in the beginning of the book. Could she play with a tree? What would that tree look like in a soccer uniform? Could she play with a squirrel? And so on. Students can draw what they are imagining and put Madlenka in the illustration playing soccer. Older students can write a sentence or two to go with it.
3. In the back of the book, Peter Sis includes the word soccer written in other languages. Pick 5 to 10 common ones and teach these to children. Then do the same with another common word like Hello or maybe the favorite sport from activity 1. Students love to learn other languages. For more fun, learn what the weather is like at this time in that country or a tradition they have for a certain holiday, etc. Create a type of multicultural lesson around that page in the book.