Make Way for Ducklings Literature Guide

Make Way for Ducklings is the ideal book to entertain and teach with. This lesson plan includes activities and resources to go with the book.

Make Way for Ducklings

by Robert McCloskey
Make Way for DucklingsPenguin Group

It's not easy for duck parentsto find a safe place to raise their ducklings, but during a rest stop in Boston's Public Garden,Mr. and Mrs. Mallard think they just might have found the perfect spot. WhenMrs. Mallard and her eight ducklings are stuck at a busy street in downtownBoston, their policeman friend Michael rushes in to stop traffic and make way forthem. This classic won the Caldecott Award in 1942.

Enrichment Activities

  • Egg-Carton Ducklings
    You will need a two-cup section from an egg carton (with the sections still attached), glue, construction paper,scissors, feathers, beads, or other decorations. Bend the egg carton cups towards each other, rim to rim (making an oval shape). Glue the cups together to form the duck's body. Cut out a bill and feet from the construction paper. Glue the feet and bill to the duckling's body. Add feathers, beads for eyes, or other decorations to complete your duckling.
  • Draw a Map
    Have your students draw pictures of objects and characters from the story,then they can place them on a map of Boston. You may want to make a large-scale, simplified map ofjust the streets that are mentioned in the story. Students can practice retelling the story and retracing the ducks' routes.
  • The Ducklings' Names
    The ducklings are named inalphabetical order – Jack, Kack, Lack, Mack, Nack, Ouack, Pack, and Quack. Have thestudents write each duckling's name on a file card, then scramble the order of the file cards, and practice putting them back in alphabetical order. See if thestudents can think of new names for the ducklings that mirror the samealphabetical sequence.
  • Communities
    This story takes place in a city and your students will be able to find urban characteristicsthroughout the book. Make a chart which highlights the characteristics ofand differences between a city, a suburban area, and a rural area. Students cancompare and contrast the buildings, open spaces, transportation, population sizes, etc.

Books by Robert McCloskey

Blueberries for Sal
Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers
Grade Levels: Pre-K, Primary, Intermediate
The adventures of a little girl and a baby bear while hunting for blueberries with their mothers onebright summer day. All the color and flavor of the sea and pine-covered Maine countryside.

Burt Dow Deep-Water Man: A Tale of the Sea in the Classic Tradition
Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers
GradeLevels: Pre-K, Primary, Intermediate
Whenever Burt Dow, who lives in a snug little house on the Maine coast, sets out to sea, his pet giggling gullgoes along. But this time, it will take all his might and some plain old ingenuity to save him and the gull from a raging storm.

Centerburg Tales: More Adventures of Homer Price
Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers
Grade Levels: Pre-K, Primary, Intermediate
It's not that the folks in Centerburg areespecially nosy; it's just that in a small town everyone seems to know everything. But Homer Pricedoes know more about what's going on than anyone, because he's usually inthe middle of things!

Homer Price
Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers
Grade Levels: Primary, Intermediate
Homer Price lives two milesout of Centerburg, where Route 56 meets 56A, but most of his friends and relativeslive in town. They include Aunt Aggy and Uncle Ulysses, the Sheriff and the boys,Miss Terwilliger, and Miss Naomi Enders. While Centerburg is not exactlynosey, precious little happens that the good citizens do not know.

Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books forYoung Readers
Grade Levels: Primary, Intermediate
Lentil cannot sing or even whistle; longing to make music in some fashion, he provides himself with a harmonica and practices constantly wherever he is, especially in thebathtub, because there his tone is improved 100 percent. A book that, along with itsfun, truly illustrates the American scene.

One Morning in Maine
Publisher: VikingChildren's Books
Grade Levels: Pre-K, Primary, Intermediate
As we follow the story of Sal and his lost tooth we feel as refreshed as though we had spenta day with his family on their island

Time of Wonder
Publisher: Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers
Grade Levels: Pre-K, Primary, Intermediate
Out on the islands that poke their rocky shores above the waters of Penobscot Bay, you can watch the time of the world go by, fromminute to minute, hour to hour, from day to day... So begins McCloskey's classicstory of one summer on a Maine island.

Penguin Young Readers Group

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The Penguin Group is the second-largest English-language trade book publisher in the world. The company possesses perhaps the world's most prestigious list of best-selling authors and a backlist of unparalleled breadth, depth, and quality. Penguin Young Readers Group features books by authors and illustrators including Judy Blume, Brian Jacques, Eric Carle, and beloved characters like Winnie-the-Pooh, Madeline, The Little Engine that Could, and many, many more.
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