Cousins of Clouds

Cousins of Clouds
Tracie's NEW BOOK!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Mrs. Biddlebox

Teacher’s Guide for
Mrs. Biddlebox by Linda Smith
Illustrated by Marla Frazee


Look at the cover only of Mrs. Biddlebox. How would you describe her? What emotion do you think best fits her face? Does she look happy? Irritated? Determined?  What do the colors used suggest about the book?

Comprehension Guide:


Describe what is wrong with Mrs. Biddlebox.
Quote your favorite description from the book.


Explain what Mrs. Biddlebox decides to do with her bad day.
Tell how she goes about her task.


If you could interview Mrs. Biddlebox, what might you ask her?
What can you learn from Mrs. Biddlebox?


Why do you think the illustrator chose the pallet she did? Would you choose the same colors? Why or why not.
Decide which page is your favorite, and defend why you chose it.


Devise a plan for YOUR next bad day. What can you do to make it better?
Pretend Mrs. Biddlebox is your mother/sister/friend. What would you say to her to make her feel better?


Choose your favorite stanza from the book, and tell why you like it so much… is it the rhyme? the funny words? the humor? the new way of seeing something?

Predict what Mrs. Biddlebox’s next day will be like.

Multiple Intelligence Projects for

Mrs. Biddlebox by Linda Smith
Illustrated by Marla Frazee

Verbal/ Linguistic

Write a recipe poem on how to make a good day. Think about what “ingredients” make up the best day you could possibly have, and then figure out a way to mix them together and bake it. (ex. 1 Cup Soccer game, 2 goals, kicked, etc.)

I’ll post the best ones on  website in the poetry resources page!!

Logical/ Mathematical

Can you double the recipe written above for twice the number of guests?


How many times do these things appear in the story:

Mrs. Biddlebox
the sun
a fork
Mrs. Biddlebox’s underpants!

Visual/ Spatial

The illustrations in the text of Mrs. Biddlebox look almost like a marbeling technique. If you haven’t tried this art project- it is fun, though I’ll admit, a little messy (Mrs. Biddlebox would be proud of you-try it!)

First, cut out the shape of a paper to represent something from the story- anything you want like the sun, or a kettle, the duck, whatever.

Then, pour liquid starch into a shallow pan. After that, using an eyedropper or other similar instrument, drop paint on top of the surface. Using a comb or fork make designs with the paint. Then, place the white paper on top of the surface, and remove fairly quickly. Thicker paper won’t buckle so much!

After it’s dry, choose your favorite stanza from the book and copy it onto the art… or just the title, author and illustrator’s name- Display! (a terrific bulletin board)


Play Mrs. Biddlebox charades. On slips of paper print out the following phrases, and act them out:

Getting up on the wrong side of the bunk
She snatched the lawn
Plucked shadows from her skirt
Twirled the fog
Yanked the sun
Rolled the sky
whipped, whisked and beat  the mess.
Stomped it into a tin
Dancing while it bakes
Set her table
Went to sleep.


Research has shown that exercise has  a big impact on mood. Experiment with this fact, and see if you can replicate the results. In other words, the next time you’re in a foul mood, go for a run or bike ride, and see if you feel better. Report the results in a journal. Keep track of whether this is true for you. ( I bet it is!!)

Musical/ Rhythmic

Sing: (tune of: Did you ever see Lassie?)

Did you ever have a bad day, a bad day, a bad day?
Did you ever have a bad day-
like Mrs. Biddlebox?

Then mix it, and whisk it,
and beat it and bake it!
Did you ever have a bad day
like Mrs. Biddlebox?


Create some background music using only kitchen utensils to go with a read aloud of Mrs. Biddlebox. Remember not to over-power the words!


Make a list of things you can do for someone at home who is having a bad day. Post the list on the refrigerator. As a class, brainstorm a list of things that could be done at school for someone who is having a bad day. Make a poster to remind each other to do small acts of kindnesses.


Think about this famous quote:

“There are no great things. There are only small things done with great love.”
 _ Mother Theresa

Write a journal about what you think this means, and how it can be revealed in your own life.


The next time you are having a really rotten day, can you imagine taking the “ingredients” of it (like bombing a spelling test, or forgetting to bring in your bike from the rain- again- and getting yelled at) and baking them together? Can you put them in the pot and let them bake up, or will you worry and feel bad about them for the rest of the day? Let’s bake!