Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett

Published by: Harper Collins Children

Date: January 17, 2012

Recommended Grades: 4-6

On a cold afternoon, in a cold little town, where everywhere you looked was either the white of snow or the black of soot from chimneys, Annabelle found a box filled with yarn of every color. 

Using the yarn, Annabelle knits herself a sweater.  When she has extra yarn, she begins to knit sweaters for other townspeople and even for things that don’t wear sweaters.  When an archduke sails across the sea and offers to buy the yarn from Annabelle, she refuses.  The archduke steals the box of yarn and sails back across the sea.  What happens in the end is a surprise for all!

Lesson Idea:

Six Traits

Organization, Surprise Ending: Read aloud Extra Yarn to the point where the archduke sails away with the yarn.  Stop and ask students to predict what they think will happen.  Read aloud the rest of the story and discuss whether student predictions were correct.  How did the author surprise the reader with the ending?  Share other books with surprise endings and use them as mentor texts when writing in writer’s workshop. 

Note: I received this book for review from the publisher. 

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