Act It Out
One of the most basic “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” activities you can do with your Kindergarteners involves acting out the story. Use brown and green sheets of tag board to cut out the shapes of a tree trunk and a leafy canopy, and tape them to the floor of the classroom to create a large coconut tree. Then give each student a piece of construction paper with a letter of the alphabet on it. All students should start sitting near the base of the tree.
When you start reading the book, students should listen for their letter and stand up when they hear it. Students can then take turns moving to the top of the coconut tree during the first half of the book, “falling” out of it on the page where the letters fall from the tree, and then standing up and walking away as their letters are called in the second half of the book.
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom with Blocks
If you have plenty of alphabet blocks, students can play a Chicka Chicka Boom Boom game in pairs. To do this, you can build a “coconut tree” by placing one long block on top of a square block. Then students can take turns adding one alphabet block at a time to the top of the tree. Challenge them to see how many blocks they can put on before the tree falls. This will help students to review the order of the letters of the alphabet (as they need to add the letters to the tree in the correct order), as well as experiment with spatial physics in a fun way.
In “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,” the letters act as individuals. You can help students become more familiar with the alphabet by letting them decorate their own letters so that they look like people. Give out a sheet with outlined letters of the alphabet on it, and show students how to draw facial features and other human appendages on them to make them look more like people. Encourage them to use the details on each letter to help them. For example, they might make the “B” look like a person facing right with a large belly, or the B might be a sideways person’s glasses. Encourage creativity and watch your students enjoy themselves creating “Letter People.”
Predicting the Future
Read “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” one last time, and ask students to discuss what happens at the end of the story. (They’ll answer that in the middle of the night, “a” goes back up the coconut tree, saying “can’t catch me!”) Students can then draw pictures describing what they think would happen if the story didn’t stop there. Let students dictate a caption, and write their captions beneath their pictures.
These “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” activities are a great way to help students expand on what they’ve learned from reading the book, as well as practice working with the various letters of the alphabet.