Maurice Sendak’s book, Where the Wild Things Are can be used to teach many different skills and fun activities that can be stretched across the curriculum. The following are some exciting activities using “Where the Wild Things Are” that can be altered to fit different age groups while still being educational.
Character Education: “Why Be a Wild Thing?”
The story is a great way to introduce a discussion on emotions and how to handle them. After reading the book, ask students if they know what emotions are. Allow time for students to answer. Then, explain that emotions are feeling. Once you have explain what emotions are, ask students if they have ever been angry like Max and if they have, how did they handle that anger. You can have them look at the consequences of Max’s behavior-being sent to his room without supper. Then brainstorm with them things that they could do differently.
Social Studies: “Where are the Wild Things?”
Have students design their own world map or globe. The model must include the 5 oceans (Pacific, Atlantic, Indian, Southern, and Arctic) and at least two continents that actually exist. Then, allow them to create their own “Land of the Wild Things” on their maps. Older students can make their model 3-D.
Science: “And a Forest Grew”
Have your students grow their own forest. Students can do something as simple as plant seeds in paper cups and watch them grow. If you want to do something on a larger scale, you can plant a classroom garden in a designated spot outside.
Art: “Create a Wild Thing”
Students can draw and paint pictures of what they think a wild thing is. They can also use pictures from the internet or various magazines to create their own “wild thing”.
Language Art: “Wild Review”
Once the students have read “Where the Wild Things Are”, have them practice their writing skills by either doing a book review. Have students include the story elements such as plot, setting, and theme. They can rate the book on a scale of 1 to 5 with 1 being not interesting at all and 5 being very interesting.
“Wild about Books”
Students can also write their own children’s story. The book can be about wild animals or how to deal with different emotions. Their story should also include fun illustrations.
Music: “Wild Rumpus”
Students can make their own rumpus. Let them use different musical instruments to make some fun “wild rumpus” of their own during playtime or music class.
Where the Wild Things Are is an unforgettable children’s book. It can be used to teach students about anger management, geography, plant growth, and how to write book reviews.