Activities & Games

Illustrated by Melissa Sweet,
winner of a 2009 Caldecott Honor Medal
and the 2012 Robert F. Sibert Medal
Paula Wiseman Books /
Simon & Schuster, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-4424-0601-8


Curriculum Guide
Here’s what’s inside!

For kids, there are masks to make, a Spike song to sing, coloring pages, holiday cards, scavenger hunt bookmarks, a maze, a mapping activity, plus Melissa Sweet's easy instructions showing how to draw Spike!

 

For teachers, reading specialist Tracie Vaughn Zimmer provides book-related questions that align with the Common Core Curriculum Standards for K-3.

 

Video For those who want to know more about the critically endangered axolotl's plight, click here for an excellent (46-minute) documentary that shows Lake Xochimilco in Mexico City and the scientists who are trying to save this very special salamander.

MASKS

Kids can reenact the story of SPIKE with these cut-and-color masks for both Spike and El Monstruo (the Gila monster).

SPOT THE DIFFERENCE COLORING PAGES

Color Spike and the Gila Monster and learn the words for the animals’ different body parts. This activity will help kids spot the differences between amphibians and reptiles.

SCAVENGER HUNT BOOKMARKS

See the pictures on the bookmark? Can your kids find the exact match in the book? Join the scavenger hunt and check off the pictures as you find them. (There are three bookmarks per sheet so several kids can play.) This activity helps kids practice careful looking and builds visual discrimination skills. 

HOW TO DRAW SPIKE

 If you can draw ovals and triangles, you can draw Spike. Caldecott Honor Medalist Melissa Sweet shows kids how in five easy steps! 

SING-ALONG SONG

“If you’re a monster and you know it, shake your spikes!” 

 

Sung to the tune of “If You’re Happy and You Know It, Clap Your Hands,” Spike’s "Monster Moves" song will get kids up and moving as they shake their spikes, swoosh their tails and bare their teeth. Additional verses encourage kids to act out all the animals in the book!

HOLIDAY CARDS

Psst! It’s time…to practice your monster moves! 

A cut-and-fold Halloween card makes it easy for kids to send spooky Spike greetings to their friends. 

 

¡Felices fiestas! 

A second card, ready for decorating, sends warm wishes for the holidays.

MAZE

Draw a line from START to FINISH to help the Gila monster visit Spike.

WHERE IN THE WORLD?

Wild axolotls live in only one place in the world—Lake Xochimilco (SO-chee-MEEL-koh)—in Mexico City.  This map shows the United States in relation to Mexico and helps kids pinpoint Spike’s home . . . and their own!

JUST FOR TEACHERS

Reading specialist Tracie Vaughn Zimmer provides oodles of ideas for using SPIKE, THE MIXED-UP MONSTER to meet Common Core Curriculum Standards.