Every month, our regular contributor and awesome storyteller Lissa Rovetch pens a wonderful story titled Ask Arizona to help kids understand—and often solve—everyday problems. And this month is no exception. For the March 2017 Highlights, the story’s main character, Arizona, wastes no time providing perspective for a reader whose pet went missing.
To keep pace with your own Ask Arizona enthusiast, check out the recap of Arizona’s own experience with a lost cat (below), or read the full story, “Sneaky Cats and Teeny-Tiny Giraffes” on pages 40-41 of the March 2017 issue. Then, use the mix of reading comprehension questions and conversation starters that follow to boost literacy skills and to encourage a great heart-to-heart with your Arizona follower.
Recap: A reader who signs her letter Sneaky-Cat Owner in San Francisco is worried about the safety of her beloved (but often disappearing) family cat, who has become quite the escape artist.
Arizona reveals she, too, has been in Sneaky-Cat Owner’s predicament: Her own cat, Charlie, also likes unauthorized outdoor adventures. Recently, Charlie escaped. Arizona’s family contacted the shelter for lost pets and posted “missing cat” flyers around the neighborhood. Charlie eventually returned, but having learned from the experience, Arizona encouraged Sneaky-Cat Owner to be extra careful not to leave doors open—and to be prepared with an emergency plan of action, just in case the cat continues to wander.
- How do your pets like to spend their days? Where are their favorite places to go? What are some of their habits and favorite things to do?
- Why are animal shelters important? How do they serve pets—and families?
- When Arizona’s cat Charlie escaped from the house, Arizona’s family posted flyers around the neighborhood to let others know he was missing. What are some other ways they could have alerted others?
- Why is it important not to panic when something like this happens? How do you remain calm in stressful situations?
- What do you think you should do—and not do—if you find a loose animal wandering around the neighborhood? Whom would you tell? Would you pet it?
Reading Comprehension Boosters:
- What does Arizona’s dad do when something stressful happens? Why do you think he does that?
- How are Arizona’s two cats, Cow and Charlie, similar? How are they different?
- Where does Charlie like to hide before he goes AWOL (absent without official leave, a military expression)? Why do you think he likes this spot?
- What does Arizona say might prevent Sneaky-Cat Owner’s cat from leaving?
- Arizona described her dad as having a “twinkle in his eye” as he told the Edward story. What do you think that expression means?