Friday, November 3, 2017

Ideas on Reading "La Casa de la Dentista"

It won't be long until the arrival of Sr. Wooly's long anticipated 2nd graphic novel, "La Casa de la Dentista " arrives at schools throughout the United States.   

In October, I received an advanced hard bound copy of the book and immediately knew how I was going to use the book with several of my classes, and, of course, it involved food. My friends know that I enjoy baking and bringing treats to my students that are related to what we are reading or learning about in class (such as this Billy la Bufanda cake) or having the students cook in class (see this post). So I searched online, found a tooth-shaped cookie cutter, and started planning the special day.

Below I listed a few things I did to make the reading of Sr. Wooly's La Casa de la Dentista even more engaging and memorable for the students. 

1. Tooth-shaped cookies. I ordered the cookie-cutter from Amazon.

2. Baking. I baked plenty of tooth-shaped sugar cookies. 

3. Decorating the cookies. I decorated the cookies and quickly found out my talents do NOT lie in decorating. I ended up with cookie that looked like a teeth that were delicious, but not "cute".  

4. Reading the book. After students had their snack(s) ready, I read the book to them, in the same way I used to read books to my children when they were young. For this book, anytime there was a possible sound effect to match the illustrations, I included those noises: voices for the characters, whispering, buzzing of a dentist drill, water splashing, buzz of overhead lights, sighs, etc.   

I knew my storytelling method was a hit when the students started adding their own sound effects without any prompting:  "clic" sounds for the teacher's powerpoint, rodents scattering, footsteps. The best sounds were their reactions - gasps, "ohhh", "don't do it", and more. At one point, I looked up and a student with her hand covering her mouth and big eyes, and the guy beside her had his hands on either side of his mouth and mouth opened, jaw dropped.  

We have 70 minute classes and it took most of the class period to read. As I said in an earlier post about this book, it is NOT meant to be read in a hurry.

I know your students will love it. You can see by the smiles on everyone's face, that it was an enjoyable day - listening to an engaging, unpredictable, story written in SPANISH. Have fun!


  1. I love this!! A quick question, were your students reading it along with you with their own copies of the graphic novels?

    1. The only copy I have is the hardbound book so I read it to them using the document camera. The graphic novels are not available yet, but they will be coming out some time this month. Even if I did have the copies, with this group of students I think I still would have read it to them with the doc camera.

      I have a classroom set ordered, but I'm not sure how I'm going to use them at this point because the students and I really liked the storytelling/reading version described in the blog post.