Literature Activities: Arthur's Tooth by Marc Brown
written by: Marlene Gundlach
• edited by: Benjamin Sell
• updated: 2/14/2012
The Arthur series of books are always among the favorites of early elementary students. This first article in the series will offer some activities to accompany the book Arthur's Tooth.
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Arthur is the only student in his class who has not lost his first baby tooth. He is being teased and is determined to do anything to lose that first tooth. A visit to the dentist helps Arthur learn that it is common for some children to not lose their first tooth until much later. Francine accidentally knocks the tooth out, and Arthur no longer feels left out.
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Arthur wiggles and wobbles his tooth to help it fall out. Brainstorm a list of other "action" words with the class. Then use some of the words to write a poem about teeth. Some possible types of poems include:
Haiku: The haiku poem is made up of three lines. The first has five syllables, the second line consists of seven syllables, and the last line is again 5 syllables.
Diamante: A diamante poem looks like a diamond when it is written because of the shape it takes. This poem follows the following pattern: Line 1=Topic (noun);Line 2 = Two describing words (adjectives); Line 3 = Three action words (-ing verbs); Line 4 = Four words: Two words about the topic and two words that are opposite of those in line 2; Line 5 = Three action words for the ending noun (-ing verbs); Line 6 = Two words to describe ending noun (adjectives); Line 7 = Ending noun (opposite of Line 1). Download a template for writing a diamante poem from our Media Gallery.
Acrostic Poem: Students can choose a tooth related word and write each letter on a different line down their paper. Then, each line of the poem begins with that letter.
Shape Poem: Give students an outline of a tooth and they can fill it in with their own poem about teeth.
For a creative writing activity, have students write a story about what the tooth fairy does with all of the teeth she collects. Encourage students to draw an picture to accompany their picture. Another creative writing prompt may be to ask the students to write about a creative way to pull out a loose tooth.
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Science and Health
An easy way to incorporate this book into your classroom is to do a unit on dental health. Discuss ways to take care of teeth and you may even set up a field trip to a local dentist. You may be able to ask the dentist to come to your classroom to give a presentation. Give students a chart to keep track of their teeth brushing and flossing for one week. Brainstorm lists of foods that are good for your teeth, and those that are bad for your teeth. Relate to them that everyone loses their baby teeth, but that doesn't mean that they shouldn't take good care of them. Students can make a mobile to share different ways to take care of your teeth and present their findings with their classmates.