Kevin Henkes Author Study

For our Kevin Henkes author study, we did this comparison chart.

The comprehension strategies/skills that we focus on during this author study are:

  • check for understanding (while reading all the stories, we stop to check for understanding. I model with "think alouds" and give the students chances to check for understanding as well.)
  • making connections (text to self)
  • characters

During our author study, we read Wemberly Worried. Click here to see our feelings chart we made to go along with the story on the first day.

After reading Chrysanthemum, we played Chrysanthemum Bingo with our names. This is a common activity for the first week, but I made my own BINGO card to share:

This doesn't really have anything to do with comprehension, but it's a good 'getting to know you' icebreaker activity during the first week.

Lily's Purple Plastic Purse is a great book to read to reinforce rules in the classroom. Students can also make a connection to this story when thinking of a time they were excited to share something in school with their friends, or a time when they got "in trouble" at school. I always end the discussion by telling them that no matter what, their teachers always still love them, just like in the story.

Later we read Julius, the Baby of the World (which also has Lily) and describe the character Lily. I use this to introduce our Reader Response notebooks. Students write a sentence about Lily in these notebooks. They glue these into their notebooks:

cute clip art by:

I especially love the book Owen because my 1 year old son is named Owen. :) After reading that book, we all talk to our "elbow buddies" about something special we have (or had) like Owen's blanket. Here is a worksheet you could use for that.

With each author study we talk about the author's style, purpose for writing, and common themes. I just love Kevin Henkes books! 

I hope to blog this weekend about my apple unit and daily 5 and beginning reading centers! I've had so many emails about how I introduce these centers at the beginning of the year, so I promise to blog about it very soon! :) 


  1. I love Kevin Henkes! What a great author study. Thanks for sharing those fabulous activities!

    Pixy Stix and Teacher Tricks

  2. Love love Kevin Henkes! Would love to learn more about how you introduce your centers. Can't wait to see your blog post. :)

  3. Kevin Henkes is one of my favorite authors and I love to read his books, too! You came up with some great ideas. Owen is my favorite, too. :)

    Heather at TeachItToday

  4. We are doing Kevin Henkes this month, too! The kids love his books. We just read "Julius, the Baby of the World" yesterday and they laughed so hard. "Disgusting!" hehe. Thanks for sharing these great activities!

    First Grade Garden

  5. I guess that great minds think alike! I am doing Kevin Henkes this month too. I was thinking about making a poster but LOVED seeing your chart. Do you do this with other authors during the year?

    Lori @
    Bee the Change
    Mrs. Faas’ First Grade

  6. Kevin Henkes is great! Thanks for the fun freebies, Sarah.

    Grade ONEderful
    Ruby Slippers Blog Designs

  7. This is great! Just what I was looking for! Thanks for posting!

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