Oh, the things you can do with The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter. Here is my list.

  • Turn the title, a fragment, into a complete sentence which summarizes the story.

  • Choose xx of Selig's favorite words. (You decide the number.) Based on the context, guess the meaning and part of speech of each one.  Then use a dictionary to check your guesses.

  • Make a list of the words you love.
            Categories:
            I love the sound of these words in my ears.
            I love the taste of these words on my tongue.
            I love the thought of these words in my brain.
            I love the feel of these words in my heart.

  • Incorporate words from the list into a story, identifying them with italics.

  • Find several favorite sentences to imitate. Follow their structure, not their content. (If you want to practice using a dash in your writing, choose one of Schotter's many examples to imitate.)
           Example:
           "Pursuing that perfect note, Selig found a young woman seated by a lake, playing a lute."
            Hearing a soprano scream, Billy noticed a petite girl perched on the bleacher, rallying the             fans.

  • Go on a language arts scavenger hunt. Find one or more of each of the following:   
            serial comma, alliteration, assonance, parallel structure, verb, adjective, appositive,                         metaphor, fragment, participle, simile, adverb

  • If you want to take a deeper look at participles, look at the lesson here.
 
 
Some might call me an English geek, but I love to read grammar handbooks.  Last week I found one written just for kids: Woe Is I Jr.: The Younger Grammarphobe's Guide to Better English by Patricia T. O'Connor. (She also wrote Woe Is I for adults, which I haven't read.)

I'm a fan. How couldn't I be?  O'Connor explains grammatical principles all kids need, in a way they can understand. I can't wait to use it; I just need to find my first victim, I mean, student. Don't be surprised if I work the book into lessons here, but until that happens, I wanted to be sure you know about it.

One bummer: Unfortunately, you'll have to tolerate occasional mentions of poop and vomit, belches and boogers. Otherwise, O'Connor does well with writing conversationally, using examples and jokes which keep the content from becoming dense and dry.
 
 
If you want to give your student practice with vocabulary and grammar while earning rice for hungry people around the world, go to Freerice.com and begin answering multiple choice questions.
 
 
How well can your students morph words from one part of speech to another?  Give them a word and ask them to identify its part of speech.  Then have them transform it into other parts of speech.

Let's take cheer, for example.  What part of speech is it?  It can be a noun or a verb.
Now ask your student to make it into an adjective: cheerful.
How about a participle: cheering.
An adverb?  cheerily.

Do this for any words that pop into your mind. Here are some that popped into mine.

Retire (v)   
noun: retirement  
adjective: retired

Exhaustion (n)   
verb: exhaust  
adjective: exhausting

Celebrate (v)    
noun: celebration
adjective: celebrative, celebratory

Excite (v)  
noun: excitement   
adjective: excited, excitable

Intense (adj)   
adverb: intensely
noun: intenseness

Another idea is to let your students think of the words, morphing them in as many ways as possible.  Then ask them to check a source, such as www. dictionary.reference.com to see what others there may be. 

In addition to becoming more savvy with parts of speech, they will see the versatility of words and build their reservoir of vocabulary!