I’ve always had a sweet spot for Max, that little bunny that so closely mirrors the behavior of many of my students. In Max’s Chocolate Chicken he’s at it again. Ruby is bound and determined to follow the egg hunt rules to win the chocolate chicken. Max, on the other hand, is easily distracted by ants, mud, acorns, a spoon….in fact, at the end of the egg hunt he has nothing but ant and acorn mud pancakes to show for his work. Does that matter? No! When you aren’t penned in by the rules, you can grab the prize and hide! (Ruby, of course, is beside herself.)
I read this story with my elementary aged students working on story comprehension/retelling and social communication goals. We can talk about the unexpected behavior of Max, as well as the stuck thinking of Ruby (and how that behavior caused Max to go rogue!) We also have a nice sequence of “found” objects on Max’s “hunt” and how together these create the opportunity for mud pancake baking.
Amazon Prime has the video version of the story (free) which is fun to use because it’s only 5 min long and low tech (meaning slowly paced). I use the video once and then we use the book when we need to refer back to parts of the story.
I also had my students create mazes that they could bring back and share in the classroom! Not wanting to share? Your students can swap mazes in the speech room or just work their own.
To grab a blank copy of the maze worksheet just click here.
Need a few more extension activities?
- Have an egg hunt in your classroom. Fill all of the eggs with acorns (or leave them empty) and put a chocolate kiss in one. After the hunt is over, talk about how it feels to not find the chocolate, how it feels if you do find the chocolate and brainstorm ways to make everyone feel comfortable with the situation. (I’d keep the bag of chocolates on hand!)
- Make “ant and acorn mud pancakes.” This is simply a variation of the classic “dirt cup” dessert. Use instant chocolate pudding for the mud (follow the instructions on the package for a nice sequencing activity on its own. Add chocolate sprinkles for the ants and a few nut pieces for the acorns (***be aware of allergies before introducing nuts in your room! Marshmallows can easily stand in for acorns if needed!***)