April 17, 2012

Just a Dream to Save Our Planet

Just a Dream to Save Our Planet
A few weeks ago I posted a question on Facebook asking teachers to tell me their favorite book to read aloud for Earth Day. Just a Dream by Chris Van Allsburg was the top recommendation, but I had not read it before. I always like his books, so I immediately ordered it from Amazon.com. It's a beautiful picture book about a boy named Walter who imagines an exciting future on Earth - until he has a dream with a series of episodes that take him on an unforgettable adventure. Walter sees what will happen to the Earth if we don't take better care of our planet.

What a great introduction to environmental issues and problems! Thanks to everyone who recommended it. It was written in 1990 so I'm not quite sure how I missed this treasure!

I had so much fun creating a set of activities based on the theme of this book!  Just a Dream to Save Our Planet starts with a quick Think-Pair-Share for students to discuss their visions of the future and is followed by a read-aloud session. After that, you can choose from several cooperative learning and writing activities.

You can download this free packet to go with Just a Dream from my TeachersPayTeachers store. Everything is explained in the teacher directions, but here's a quick list of what you'll find:
  • 8 prepared discussion cards
  • 4 blank discussion cards
  • 9 cards describing the events
  • A graphic organizer for sorting the event cards into categories
  • Problem-Solution graphic organizers for the environmental issues   
Why am I giving this 15-page packet away for free? I guess because I think it's so important for all kids to explore environmental issues and discuss ways to protect our Earth. So it's my gift to you, and I hope you will make this lesson your gift to your students!


  1. Love this! Thanks for sharing. I'm going to incorporate these activities into my Earth Day Week unit!

  2. This is great! Thank you so much for sharing.

    Blogging Blessings,

    The Teacher's Chatterbox

  3. I have always loved using this book. Thank you so much for these activities! I just downloaded them and I especially love the discussion cards.

    Thanks as always!


    Fun in Room 4B

  4. 1. I love that book! You can't even get it in stores now :( I should order it used on Amazon.
    2. I just discovered your blog and absolutely love it. I'm a preservice teacher and am excited to have stumbled upon your blog.
    3. You are doing a great service for teachers. Thank you!!

  5. thanks so much Laura, love your stuff.

  6. Stopping by to visit my fellow 5-Star Bloggers! I'm not familiar with this book, but will be sure to check it out! I love your blog!


  7. I must try this book, Laura. Thanks for recommending.



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  9. This book has been one of my favorites for a long time. Thanks for reminding me that I have it on my shelf and for the activities!


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