Enemy Pie by Derek Munson is one of my favorite read alouds to start the school year! Not only does this book provide teachable moments about friendship, but students relate to it and love the surprise ending! Today I'd like to share some of my favorite activities and resources to use with this book.
If you aren't familiar with this story, here's a book summary:
It was the perfect summer. That is, until Jeremy Ross moved into the house down the street and became neighborhood enemy number one. Luckily Dad had a surefire way to get rid of enemies: Enemy Pie. But part of the secret recipe is spending an entire day playing with the enemy!
I usually start reading Enemy Pie on the fourth day of school, which has always been a Monday in our district. By waiting a couple of days, I can gauge which activities are most appropriate for the class I have (it changes slightly each year) and I have Friday afternoon to pull and copy all of the materials I will need. During our first read, I simply allow my students to enjoy the story. After reading, we talk about the qualities of a good friend and record them on a chart.
(a student copy is included with the book companion)
Before our second reading of the story, I introduce my students to a handful of the vocabulary words. I read each word aloud to my students and tell them to keep their ears open during the story for them. Instead of hearing me read the story again, I like to show this video of Camryn Manheim reading it. Besides, my voice is tired of talking that first week of school and it allows students to hear the story in a different way.
(video first appeared on Storyline Online)
After hearing the story, we go back and discuss the vocabulary. I help them find the words in context and we discuss what each word means. Then we'll complete a vocabulary match-up together (some years I give the students a copy of their own to work on with me).
After the vocabulary, we do a group comprehension check. I have the questions printed, folded, and placed into a container. Sometimes you need to engage those reluctant students and entice them to participate. With this book, I put the questions into an empty Mason jar and used a mini whisk to mix up the questions. I think it could be fun to put the questions into a pie plate, too!
The comprehension questions can also be answered in written form on the printables included in this pack. You'll also find several graphic organizers to help students retell and/or summarize the story.
dash - sprinkle - cup - touch - pinch - teaspoon - tablespoon - handful
kindness - loyalty - trust - patience - support - laughter - respect - time
pour - mix - knead - combine - stir - mold
After our recipes are written, it's time to make some pie, too (the paper kind, of course!):
Since crafts and writing can take quite a bit of time at the beginning of the year, I like to have an activity on hand for my fast finishers. Here's a little game they can play:
As I mentioned before, this book touches on the theme of friendship. At the beginning of the year I like to give my students scenarios they may face during the school year and ask, "What would you do?" That's why I added this Friendly Advice Pie craft. Students are given four situations, which open like a pie slice. Students can write their responses under each flap.
You can grab all of these resources and more in this Enemy Pie Book Companion.
I hope you have found some activities and resources you can take back into your own classroom!