Teachers for Teachers | It’s Monday! Check Out These Traditional Tales Published in 2018 #IMWAYR #BuildYourStack
post-template-default,single,single-post,postid-16763,single-format-standard,ajax_updown,page_not_loaded,,vertical_menu_enabled,qode-title-hidden,side_area_uncovered_from_content,qode-theme-ver-13.1.2,qode-theme-bridge,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.4.5,vc_responsive

It’s Monday! Check Out These Traditional Tales Published in 2018 #IMWAYR #BuildYourStack

When we looked over the stacks of books (#Buildyourstack) we read over the last six months, we noticed the amount of new traditional tales published in 2018.  Some of these new picture books weave elements from the classic tales throughout the story, while other authors created a new “traditional tale” without mentioning any other fairy tale characters.  Either way, we added these three picture books to our collection of Tried and True Traditional Tales:

The Very Last Castle, Travis Jonker, and Mark Pett

We knew Travis Jonker’s Scope Notes for School Library Journal and his podcast, The Yarn, but we didn’t know he was a picture book author – Congratulations, Travis!  The Very Last Castle is an original fairy tale with an important message about how fear of the unknown can keep us isolated from one another.

If your first, second, or third graders are going to write traditional tales, The Very Last Castle will be an excellent mentor text to add to your collection.  Students can study this text and learn how to use ellipses, thought shots, and embed sound words.  They can also see how to create a story with a strong message and develop a close-in ending.  This tale is engaging and easy-to-read, making it a mentor text that many students can access independently.

Interrupting Chicken and the Elephant of Surprise, David Ezra Stein

If your students loved Interrupting Chicken as much as we did, you need to get a copy of Interrupting Chicken and the Elephant of Surprise by David Ezra Stein.  In this sequel, the Little Red Chicken confuses the term elephant with the “element of surprise.”  As his papa reads aloud some traditional fairy tales, wouldn’t you know it, but an elephant shows up in every story.  In the end, the Little Red Chicken’s father writes a story that includes an “elephant” and an “element of surprise.”

This is one of those books that readers from kindergarten through sixth grade will love.  In upper elementary classrooms, this book will be interesting for readers to study as a mentor text.  The way the story unfolds and how David Ezra Stein uses a play on words to teach and engage readers will be fun craft moves for students to try out in their own fiction stories.

The Princess and the Pitstop, Tom Angleberger and Dan Santat

The Princess and the Pitstop is a book you will want to save and read aloud to culminate a unit of study on traditional tales. The author’s play on words throughout the book are absolutely hysterical for readers who know the classic traditional tales.  They will be predicting as the Princess makes her way around the racetrack.

This book is also going in our books to read with a partner or book club basket.  We want readers to have the opportunity to reread this book multiple times to see the layers of meaning hiding in the words and illustrations.  It is a book with important messages about perseverance and “girl power.”

P.S.  Don’t forget to tell students to look closely at the illustrations and quotes underneath the book jacket.  Readers are in for a surprise.




  • Avatar
    Jana Eschner
    Posted at 15:59h, 03 December Reply

    Interrupting Chicken looks like such a fun book to share with kids. Thanks for sharing and have an awesome week!

  • Avatar
    Cheriee Weichel
    Posted at 16:54h, 03 December Reply

    Getting students to write their own fractured fairy tales was always one of my favourite part of teaching. I’m going to see if I can fine a copy of The Very Last Castle at my local library now!

  • Avatar
    Jane @ Raincity Librarian
    Posted at 19:48h, 03 December Reply

    Oooh, another Interrupting Chicken book!!!

  • Avatar
    Posted at 22:02h, 03 December Reply

    I have The Very Last Castle on my reading list, so I hope we get a copy here SOON! I think I’ll re-read Interrupting Chicken in anticipation of getting Interrupting Chicken and the Elephant of Surprise in soon. 🙂 Thank you for the shares, Tammy & Clare!

  • Avatar
    Linda Baie
    Posted at 23:07h, 03 December Reply

    Interrupting Chicken is a favorite of my first-grade granddaughter & the other two are new to me, so thanks for sharing them, too.

  • Avatar
    Lisa Maucione
    Posted at 23:59h, 03 December Reply

    The Very Last Castle and Interrupting Chicken are on my tbr list. Second grade does a fairy tale/folktale unit at my school. These both will probably be good books to have on hand for students to check out.

  • Avatar
    Aaron Cleaveley
    Posted at 21:12h, 05 December Reply

    Three very fun books. There are so many great books based on traditional tales. It is such a fun unit to teach. Thanks for sharing these.

  • Avatar
    Myra from GatheringBooks
    Posted at 10:30h, 06 December Reply

    Princess and Pit Stop looks absolutely delightful! Awesome! Have a great reading week!

Post A Comment

Verification *