December Secrets

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For use in schools and libraries only. Everyone in Ms. Rooney's class has a special person to be kind to during the December holidays, but Emily has a tough time trying to make Jill Simon, the class crybaby, happy.
Curriculet Details
21 Questions
23 Annotations
3 Quizzes

Designed for students in 3rd grade, this free digital curriculum contains annotations explaining textual evidence, inference and summarization. It also contains interactive videos that support comprehension, such as videos about dialogue and figurative language. Over the course of the book, students will answer Common Core questions and quizzes related to the subjects of theme, characterization, and vocabulary. This free online unit will increase student engagement while building reading comprehension.

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Chapter 1

Based on the details in the text, what event is going on at Emily's school today? 
Emily Arrow is stuck with crybaby Jill Simon as her "secret friend" to be kind to for the whole month of December. Will Emily become friends with Jill or will she be glad when December is over? 
What do the details in the text reveal about Dawn? 
Why does Jill start crying? 

Chapter 2

What is revealed through the dialogue on this page? 
Dialogue is the conversation between two or more characters in a story. Watch the video to learn more about dialogue.  (This annotation contains a video)
What similarities does the picture have to the text? 
Make Connections: Have you ever participated in anything like "secret friend"? Did you like it? 
Why does Emily want Ms. Rooney's approval? 
Did you know that you can look up any word in the text of the book or the text of the questions and answers? Just click (or press on mobile devices) the word you want to define and hold until the blue text selector pops up. When you release, a define option will appear. Since it's so easy to look up words, make sure you use this feature frequently... Is there a word on this page you need to look up? 
Use the DEFINE feature to read the definition of drew. Which of the following sentences uses drew in the same context as it is used in the story? 

Chapter 3

Who do you think will be the best secret person for Emily, Dawn or Jill?  
Why will Ms. Rooney NOT let the students pick their own name as a secret person? 
Why does Emily say something nice about Jill even though she thinks she is a crybaby? Do you think Emily's relationship with Jill will change because she is her secret person? 
How do you think Matthew will feel when Beast gives him aftershave? Use details in the text to support your answer. 
Quiz 1 

Chapter 4

Which detail from the text relates to the picture? 
How do you think Jill will feel when she sees this picture? How would you feel if your secret person gave it to you? 
Make Predictions: What do you think Ms. Rooney's class is going to do for December? 
What do the details in the highlighted text reveal about Jill? 

Chapter 5

In Patricia Reilly Giff's book 'The Beast in Ms. Rooney's Room,' the kids name the fish "Drake" after one of their schoolmates who is always mean to other kids. 
Why does Emily laugh instead of get mad at Beast for calling her "Fish Face"? 
How do you know that Timothy Barbiero is the glue monitor? 
What do you think Ms. Rooney will have her students do with the macaroni and the cigar box? What clues in the text support your answer? 
How does the way Emily feels about certain classmates determine how many pieces of macaroni she gives them? 
Is Dawn giving friends she likes most more pieces of macaroni? What makes you think she is doing the same thing Emily is doing? 

Chapter 6

How does Emily know Dawn put the picture in her book? 
What is Emily going to do with the picture she found in her music book? 
Why does Emily lie to Ms. Rooney about why she is not in music class? 
Why does Matthew want to put the candy in Beast's desk? 
Quiz 2 

Chapter 7

What do you "see" when you think about Christmas? 
Do you think Emily should write a note about a diet to go with the pencil? Why or why not? 
Do you agree that the poem Emily was going to write would hurt Jill's feelings? 
Why is writing Surprise on the piece of paper better than writing Try a Diet? 

Chapter 8

Why do you think Ms. Rooney chose Jill to go with Emily instead of Beast? 
Why does Emily tell Jill her bows look pretty instead of telling her she looks like a fat green lollipop? 
Onomatopoeia is a word that imitates the natural sound of a thing. It creates a sound effect that mimics the thing being described, making the description more expressive and interesting. "Glunk" is an example of onomatopoeia. Look at the other examples below.  (This annotation contains an image)
How are Emily's feelings toward Jill changing? What is causing this change in their friendship? 
Why does Emily stop talking after she says, "I"? 
Do you think Dawn is intentionally trying to make Emily mad? Or does she really not know who is giving her gifts? 

Chapter 9

Do you think Dawn would get Emily a truck? Why or why not? 
Why was Dawn mad at Emily? 
Do you think Jill will cry about her macaroni box? Why or why not? 
Why does Emily want to give Jill her macaroni box? 
Did you have an idea that Emily was Jill's secret December person? Why or why not? 
Quiz 3