How long can you sit still before you feel the urge to move? Chances are it’s longer than most kids can. And some children just can’t sit still no matter how hard they try. So how can we help those kids? Whenever I can, I like to share a book that kids can relate to AND learn from.
Julia Cook writes some of the best books for school-aged children! She has just released her newest book, I Have Ants in My Pants! This book has some great tips for helping kids who get the wiggles and can’t sit still. I want to share more about this book as well as a few activities you can pair with it.
About the Book
Written by: Julia Cook
Illustrated by: Carrie Hartman
Some children just can’t sit still no matter how hard they try. And Louis is no exception. He accidentally kicks his friend during story time. He can’t stand still in the lunch line. And he wiggles in his seat at the movie theater.
Everyone keeps telling him he has ants in his pants, but Louis doesn’t see any ants! Louis’ mom explains that this means he wiggles a lot, and she teaches him a special tool, the Wiggle Dance.
With a little practice and a few helpful tools, Louis learns that he can calm his wiggles and become the boss of the ants in his pants!
As a teacher and a mom, I know that it is normal for kids to get the wiggles. I also know that some kids have a hard time sitting still no matter how hard they try. That’s why I think many kids will relate to Louis and his need to move. I love that this story shares several helpful tips that kids can try right away to manage their own wiggles. These tips are not only practical, but realistic for classroom use, too.
In addition to the story, Julia Cook has also included a helpful page with tips for teaching kids how to sit still. These tips would be helpful for both parents and teachers!
I Have Ants in My Pants Activities
Here are several activities you can use before, during, and after reading I Have Ants in My Pants! by Julia Cook.
- Questions: These 8 questions can help guide your discussion as you read the book.
- Wiggle, Wiggle!: After reading the story, students will use the tips Mom gave Louis to label each picture.
- Ants in My Pants: Do your kids know what it means to have ants in your pants? This page helps them draw and write what the phrase sounds like and what it really means.
- What Do You Mean?: Students explain what each of the common phrases really mean.
- Written Response: Students can use these pages to answer a discussion question, to write about a time they had ants in their pants, strategies for getting the wiggles out, and more!
You can download these I Have Ants in My Pants! activities here.
Where to Find the Book
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Whether you’re teaching in the classroom, at home, or through a computer screen, don’t forget to build in some wiggle time! I love these brain break activities!
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