There are so many great words to focus on in this story....polished, hauled, useless, massage, filthy, exhausted and many more.
Focus on the verbs the author uses...screamed, grabbed, hauled, squealed, relaxed and more.
What are the repeating phrases in the book? "Just a thought, Mr. Fox."
How do the events in the story repeat? (The pig talks the fox out of eating him three times. Each time the fox does three things.)
Will the story repeat itself? (The pig shows up at the bear's door.)
Where does your thinking change? At what point in the story did you start to figure out that the pig was up to something?
Here's a clip of a child in my class explaining where in the story her thinking changed.
How does the author get your attention from the very beginning? Why is the ending so funny? (It is surprising.)
What's the big idea of this story? Is it that the underdog triumphs? Is it that sometimes trickster characters seem helpless?
Evaluating and Characterization:
What words describe the pig, the trickster character?
Act out the story in pairs so that one person is the pig and the other is the fox.
Pretend you are the fox and retell the story.
Pretend you are the pig and retell the story.
Find evidence in the story that the pig is "smart." (He uses flattery. He uses the power of suggestion. He has a strategy and a plan.)
Create a sequel to the story in which the pig visits the bear.
Write a letter to bear warning him about the pig.
As you can see, we had some great learning moments with this book. I only wish I had more video and pictures to share...I need my own personal camera man to capture my students' brilliant thinking!
Keiko Kasza also has a website: www.keikokasza.com. There are resources about the author and you can download this excellent thirteen-page guide to using her books.