Fatima the Spinner and the Tent
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By Idries Shah
Illustrated by Natasha Delmar
ISBN: 978-1-883536-42-8 (hardback) $18.00
ISBN: 978-1-942698-07-4 (paperback) $11.90
Hardback: 32 pages
Paperback: 36 pages
Fatima’s life is beset with what seem to be disasters. Her journey leads her from Morocco to the Mediterranean, Egypt, Turkey and, finally, to China. It is in China that she realizes that what seemed at the time to be really unfortunate events became an integral part of her eventual fulfillment.
This Teaching-Story is well known in Greek folklore, but this version is attributed to the Sheikh Mohamed Jamaludin of Adrianople (modern-day Edirne) in Turkey, who died in 1750.
Natasha Delmar lives and works in the Bay Area. She is the daughter of the celebrated classic Chinese painter Ng Yi-Ching, who taught her to paint.
“This fascinating tale will captivate young readers with its suspenseful plot. Older readers can make connections with their own lives and explore the deeper meanings of the concepts of misfortune, opportunity, and ultimate happiness. The detailed, colorful artwork of Natasha Delmar adds depth and richness to the story. With each reading, children and adults will find new details in the illustrations to appreciate and discuss. In addition, reading the book to and with children provides an excellent opportunity to build their vocabulary and literacy skills while developing their appreciation for good literature.” —Denise Nessel, Ph.D., Consultant and Director of Publications
National Urban Alliance for Effective Education
“Designed for ages five and older, this book is an excellent example of a ‘Teaching-Story’ used to promote critical thinking through the power of an entertaining tale. Discussions about goal-setting, perseverance, and hard work will come naturally while reading this volume.” —KaaVonia Hinton, Ph.D., Foreword Reviews
“If you are looking for a book for all ages that all can take something away from the reading, this just might be the book you are looking for. While aimed at children … there is definitely more to it than that and even adults will find something to take away from the experience.” —Wisconsin Muslim Journal
Available from Amazon in hardback, paperback and Kindle. Also available from the Apple iBooks Store.
Step-by-step instructions for creating finger puppets (PDF): Fatima the Spinner and the Tent finger puppets
Step-by-step instructions for creating paper bag puppets (PDF): Fatima the Spinner and the Tent paper bag puppets
Step-by-step instructions for creating felt characters (PDF): Fatima the Spinner and the Tent felt characters
Downloadable manual (PDF): Fatima the Spinner and the Tent manual for parents and caregivers
Hoopoe Books Reader’s Theater
Giving Students a Reason to Read, and Re-Read, Aloud
- The reader’s theater strategy combines students’ desire to perform with their need for oral reading practice. Reader’s theater offers an entertaining and engaging means of improving fluency through repetition, reading with expression, and enhancing comprehension.
- Reader’s theater is a way to involve students in reading aloud. In reader’s theater, students “perform” by reading the Hoopoe books’ scripts created for this purpose. Students can perform the scripts with or without costumes or props.
- Reader’s theater is a strategy that combines reading (and re-reading) practice and performing. Its goal is to enhance students’ reading skills and confidence by having them practice reading with a purpose. Reader’s theater gives students an authentic reason to read aloud.
- Re-Reading to Develop Fluency:
Reader’s theater motivates reluctant readers and English language learners, and provides fluent readers the opportunity to explore genre and characterization. Hoopoe Books Reader’s Theater scripts can be used as early as first-grade. Re-reading is a key factor in developing fluency, which is necessary for comprehension. Students don’t even realize they are re-reading as they practice the script.
- Re-Reading to Develop Understanding:
The value of reader’s theater is increased when used as a strategy for increasing understanding of what is being read. Students also practice reading with expression when they take on the roles in the script.
- Re-Reading to Develop Voice:
Reader’s theater is a wonderful technique for helping readers learn to read aloud with expression and joy. Performing reader’s theater without props allows the readers to learn that the inflection in their voices needs to provide much of the drama of the story.
- “I love watching my English language learners gain more fluency and confidence as they perform the Hoopoe Books Reader’s Theaters,” says educator and I Have a Dream volunteer, Leanne Lockhart. “They love hamming it up and making costumes and scenery too.”
Some students are hams — they just don’t know it until they get up in front of the group. There is no risk in reader’s theater, because no memorization is required. And, there’s opportunity for practice, so struggling readers are not put on the spot.
- Hand out a photocopied Hoopoe script
- Assign a part to each child
- Have her simply read the script aloud and act it out. That’s all you have to do.
“Magic” occurs when the students get to be on stage — even if that stage is the floor of the classroom or library. Shy children may blossom, and students develop a strong sense of community.
- Start slowly so students feel comfortable in the performance mode. Students do not memorize their parts; they always read from their scripts. Provide lots of opportunities for practice.
- Read the book several times, offering instructional support for new vocabulary, and for understanding the different characters. You can do many other activities with the story to develop understanding before doing the reader’s theater. *A complete set of lesson plans can be found on Hoopoe’s website.
- Students simply stand or sit in a semicircle or on a stage, if one is available.
- Model each character’s part and match roles to readers.
- If you have a larger group than the number of roles, you may have several readers’ theater groups going simultaneously.
- Work with small groups, not with the entire class, if possible.
- You might invite families or caregivers to a presentation, or invite another class to the reader’s theater enactment.
- You might also video the performance or do a radio podcast.
~May Hoopoe Reader’s Theater enliven your classroom and your students’ lives, as well as cement learning that lasts.
Teacher Lesson Plans
The Hoopoe Teaching-Stories series provides a multicultural program designed to meet the National Standards in Education and guide students towards mastery of the content required by the Common Core State Standards for Language Arts, the California Content Standards in English Language Learners, History/Social Science, and Visual and Performing Arts. These multicultural tales are designed with a wide range of student abilities in mind. Hoopoe Teaching-Stories can be used with: Advanced students, English-language learners, and students with learning disabilities or reading difficulties.
Hoopoe Teaching-Stories prepare students to master the California Reading Common Core State Standards for Language Arts by helping them build skills in reading comprehension, literary response and analysis, and vocabulary development.
Grades 3–5 (PDF): Fatima the Spinner and the Tent Gr3-5 lesson plan
Grades 6–8 (PDF): Fatima the Spinner and the Tent Gr6-8 lesson plan
Common Core State Standards for ELA – English Language Arts
California Content Standard Alignment:
Grades 6–12 Hoopoe titles have been correlated with the The Protocol for Review of Instructional Materials for English Language Learners (PRIME) through the World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA) tool (http://prime.wceruw.org/instructionalMaterials/index.aspx). Click here for a copy of the report.
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