# Storybook Guide Based on Robie H. Harris’s “Now What? A Math Tale”

## Activity Summary

Use this storybook guide with the book “Now What? A Math Tale.”
Many public libraries have this book.

Puppy wants to use different blocks to build a bed long enough and wide enough for a nap. But Puppy needs to find the right number and type of blocks—rectangles, squares, and triangles—to make the bed. What will Puppy do? Watch Puppy try to build again and again until finally figuring out how different blocks can fit together to make a bed. Now Puppy is ready for a snooze!

#### Words to Learn

Numbers
1, 2, 3, 4, lots, more

Shape and spatial words
top, bottom, upside down, downside up, corners, straight lines, rectangle, side, square, triangle

Measurement words
long, wide, short, skinny, same, big, small

Now What? presents ideas about shape and spatial relations, as well as counting and measurement. While reading the story, your child can learn:

• That shapes have specific properties. For example, a rectangle has four corners and four straight lines, and no matter how we look at it, it is still a rectangle.
• That a square is one kind of rectangle.
• That we can count the number of blocks as Puppy builds a bed or count the sides to figure out the shape of each block.
• How to think about measurement. Puppy finds that one block is not long enough and not wide enough for a bed. He keeps adding blocks and measuring until he has enough.
• TALK ABOUT PROPERTIES OF SHAPES
How many sides does a rectangle have? How many sides does a square have? How is the square block different from the rectangle block?
• TALK ABOUT HOW DIFFERENT BLOCKS CAN BE USED TO MAKE DIFFERENT SHAPES
There are no more rectangle blocks. Let’s find some other blocks Puppy could use to help build his bed.
• DISCUSS MEASUREMENT AND SPATIAL WORDSD
This block is longer than that one. What’s the opposite of long? What’s the opposite of above?

Try to come up with some of your own questions and comments, too!