Next to science, the thing that I am most passionate about is reading and storytelling. I love a good story and so do my kids. We picked up the book, Ah Ha! by Jeff Mack from the library. My kids started reenacting it on their own, so I made them a little storytelling basket. You can do this or the sorting activity with any of your favorite books. The goal is to have fun connecting to the stories. This post contains affiliate links.
Ah Ha! by Jeff Mack
Ah Ha! is a simply written book. It only has 2 letters (a and h), but the combination of the letters makes for a fun little story. The frog is relaxing on the pond when a kid comes along and tries to catch him. The frog manages to get away but then he ends up being chased by a few other animals – a turtle, an alligator, and a bird. My only criticism is that the pink bird looks like a flamingo with a weird beak. I’m guessing it’s supposed to be a Scarlet Ibis (although the feet are wrong). Ibises sometimes eat frogs but flamingos do not. This story will have everyone laughing. Will the frog finally get away?
Create a Storytelling Basket
Ah Ha! only has a handful of characters so it makes for an easy storytelling basket. Pull out the characters as you read the story. Let your kids hold them and say the characters’ lines. We used a flamingo in our storytelling basket because it was only pink bird we had. I did talk to the kids about how a flamingo would not be trying to catch a frog.
Story Sorting Activity
Take learning about the story one step further with this sorting activity. Along with the items in the story, select some things that are not in the story.
Have your child sort through the items. Things that are in the story go into the basket and things that are not in the story stay out. (Or you can have two baskets or two labeled piles.)
The first time we did the story sorting, toddler Lily said everything except for the alligator and flamingo was in the story. Too funny.
Add In Some Science
Ah Ha! is a story about a frog trying to escape from predators. Talk about the different animals in the story. What adaptations (traits) do they have that help them catch the frog? How does the frog escape? What features make the frog unique? (Learn about amphibians.)
The snapping turtle is hiding in the water. It looks like a rock. This is camouflage. (Read more about the lures in their mouths. They set a trap for their prey and just sit and wait.)
The alligator is also hiding in the water. It looks like a log. It has sharp teeth and a powerful jaw.
The Scarlet Ibis is hiding among the reeds. It has long legs to allow it to walk through the shallow water. The ibis sticks it’s beak into the sand or under plants to find its food. Typically they eat small crustaceans (that’s why they’re pink or red!), insects, fish, and amphibians. Do you think the Scarlet Ibis would have been able to catch the frog? Hint: think about the size of the frog.
More Storytelling Ideas
- Check out our Storybook Science series for lots of science activities inspired by children’s books.
- Goodnight Moon Storytelling Basket – this one is perfect for babies and toddlers.
- Whiteboard Story Scenes for Pretend Play – use a whiteboard as the backdrop for imagination.
- 50+ Storytelling Ideas – you’ll find story starters, activities, tips, and more!
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