See video of this book read aloud here: 999 Frogs Wake Up
Introduction (Prep Questions)
Use the cover and title to predict what the story is about.
What is on the cover? What do we know about frogs?
In our title there is a number that means a lot. Tell them that if Mother Frog had just one more froglet, she would then have 1,000 froglets. Show students the 1,000 graphic and ask them to discuss probability of Mother Frog having that many froglets.
Post Reading Discussion:
P.1: Ask students to name the four seasons. Ask what they know about spring. Discuss the significance of spring (notably in colder areas) when trees grow leaves, blossoms, flowers bloom. Ask what they know about hibernation and discuss. Note that spring is when hibernating creatures wake up.
Show students the words “POP! POP! POP!” and ask them how the words help the reader (provide the “sound” of the froglets waking up). Ask students why those words are written larger and darker than the regular words on the page. Ask the students how many times the author would have had to write the word “POP!” to match the story.
P. 3: Ask students what the problem is (Mother is missing one of her children). Ask students what word helps Mother (snoring) and how it helps her solve her problem. Show students “Zzz…zzz…zzz” and discuss what it means; have them compare it to POP! and how it helps the reader to “hear” the story.
Pp. 5-6: How do the froglets feel on this page (happy). What word helps us to know that (giggle). How does the picture help us understand where Big Brother is?
P. 9-10: How does Big Brother feel (sleepy)? How does the picture help us know that (lines on eyes to show eyes are not fully opened).
Pp. 11-12: Have students predict what could be sleeping.
Pp. 13-14: Who was sleeping? What was Old Turtle’s worry (did he miss spring)? What words helps us to know that it has happened to Old Turtle before (again)? How did the froglets know that it was spring (cherry trees blossoming).
Pp. 15-16: Ask students to discuss what the “pink” means in the picture and the significance of the large block of pink (treeful of blossoms) and what the little pink splots mean (falling petals).
Pp. 19-20: How did Lizard recognize spring after he was wakened up from his hibernation (warmth)?
Pp. 23-24: Show students photo of aphids. Tell students that aphids are bad for flowers but that ladybugs eat aphids so ladybugs help gardens. Ask students why the ladybugs’ first question was “Have the flowers blossomed yet?”
Pp. 25-26: Ask students to predict what could be sleeping in a hole.
Pp. 29-30: Have students use illustration to refine their guesses as to what could be sleeping in the hole. How do we know that whatever it is, it is big (it took all of the froglets working together to pull it out).
Pp. 31-32: Ask students to discuss the implications of the froglets waking up a large snake, and why (snakes eat frogs).
Pp. 33: Reread the first 2 sentences. How did Mother Frog know her froglets were in danger (they were all standing perfectly still). How does Big brother feel (scared)? How do we know (he trembled); have students demonstrate trembling. What sentence should have really scared the froglets (“Is it time for nice meal?”) and why? What clever way did Mother Frog help to save her froglets? What does “as gently as if she were soothing a baby” mean? Ask students to discuss how the picture helps to show it.