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Friends Around the World

Found In: reading, project based learning, crafts & cooking

I do a “Friends Around the World” theme using the Madeline book series. We begin by giving interesting facts about the author and illustrator of children’s books, Ludwig Bemelmans, whose wife’s name was Madeline, and then we read the first Madeline book.

We make a Madeline out of paper and do a character description for her. We make a paper suitcase and talk about what we will need to take with us if we go to France where Madeline lives. We make a passport with our school picture in them, make a ticket, and make clothes, sunglasses and whatever else we would like to put in our suitcase.

After learning several facts about France and learning about several landmarks in Paris, we pretend that we are going on a plane trip to France, and I show the slides of my own trip there. We also read the Anatole books and sample French cheese. We make a journal of our trip to Paris and put pictures in it that the children draw.

At the end of our unit, we have a French breakfast for parents. I make homemade French bread that is a great hit with all! “April in Paris” is an excellent way to end the year.


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