In this lesson students learn the modern classic Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley. Then, they design and draw their own monsters. My students love to scream “Go Away” as we take this monster down! Halloween has never been so much fun! If you don’t know Mr. Emberley’s work, you and your kids are in for a delightful surprise!
To respond to Ed Emberley’s work by designing a monster and being able to tell it how to “Go Away!” using language patterns from the text.
Each student will successfully design his or her own monster, then draw a picture of the monster to fill a class display. Using the assignment, the student will be able to make his monster “Go Away.”
Ask students whether monsters are real? (Answer: Of course not!) If monsters are only pretend, we can make them anything we want them to be. And, we can make them do anything we want them to do. We are in control, not the monster!!
Inform the children that, in today’s lesson, they will get to learn how to create a monster and how to take a monster away. Then they will design and draw their own monsters! The monsters will be used to create a special Halloween display.
Ask the children to use their imaginations to create the scariest monster EVER!! What does their monster look like? Have a few children share their ideas.
Share Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley. I typically overdo the sound effects and theatrics to get the kids wrapped up in the story. When you get to the “Go Away” parts, let the kids yell “Go Away” at the top of their lungs in order to send the monster away.
Once the monster has been sent away, ask if anyone wants to bring him back! If so, and if you want to go through the book again, let one of the students or a group of the students do the reading. The words are simple, predictable, and sparse. So, this is a great piece for choral reading.
After you are sure that the students understand the story, work with them for a few minutes on words that describe, or adjectives. Ask how you might describe teeth, hair, eyes, etc. What are colors that could be used? What are words that describe size?
If you believe that they need it, make a chart with some of these words. Kids who have a hard time with the assignment can come back to the chart and pick up a word related to size, color, or shape. The word chart will help you differentiate and accommodate EAL students.
Give the students enough time to complete the writing and drawing parts of the assignment. Hopefully they’ll give you some amazing monsters!
Wrap up by having some of the children show off their monsters. Make sure that their names are on their work. If you have enough time, have the kids cut out their monsters. Mount them on backing paper and then use them to create a Halloween display in the library.
- Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley
- Student assignment sheet (attached)
- Colored pencils or markers
- Pencils for completing the written portion of the assignment
- Scissors for cutting out the monsters
- Backing paper for the monster drawings
This is one of the most fun lessons all year! The text is short and simple, but so cleverly designed. As soon as the kids realize that they are in charge, they will want to build the monster and take him apart over and over again! If you can only do one Halloween story a year, this is the one!
Recommended books for this lesson:
Go Away, Big Green Monster! by Ed Emberley
Monsters, Halloween, Fear, Control, Power