Little Bianca—Vocabulary Focused Lesson Plan

Program/Lesson 2 for “Little Bianca”
Vocabulary Focus

Ages: 5-8

Materials Required:
Book – “Little Bianca” by Mack H. Webb, Jr.

Overview: This lesson focuses on reading comprehension by exploring how words can convey humor or extra meaning in a story and expanding the children’s understanding of more difficult vocabulary.

Objectives: (Language Arts)

Students will:

1. Listen to a story.
2. Gather definitions for ten new words.
3. Recognize humor created through the playful use of words.

Set Up: Arrange a chair for the reader and clear floor space in front of the reader for the children to sit.


1. Have the children sit down to listen to a story.

2. Read the story “Little Bianca” by Mack H. Webb, Jr.

3. After the story is over, discuss the following points.

4. Using a blackboard/whiteboard/poster board, write down the following words. The numbers in parentheses indicate the page on which the word appears.

  • Prospective (1)
  • Trundles (3)
  • Composure(7)
  • Distress(8)
  • Pigments(11)
  • Hinder(19)
  • Wring(21)
  • Pompous(23)
  • Arrogant(24)
  • Composition(31)

5. Have the children write these words down on their own sheet of paper. Then have them search for the meanings of these words by using the dictionary or explain the meaning of each word depending on the capabilities of your group. Have the children write down the meaning next to the word on their paper. (This could be a homework assignment with the lesson continuing the next day.)

6. Re-read the sentence in the story in which each of the above words occurs and ask the children to rephrase the sentence based on the definitions they learned.

7. If time allows, explain to the children that there are two jokes in the story that have to do with the naming of two characters – the art critic, Mr. Knonaught, and the art buyer, Mr. Drachmas. Write the word “naught” on your board. Explain that “naught” means zero or nothing. Write that below the word “naught”. Then write “Kno” in front of the word “naught” leaving a small space between the words. Explain that this word part sounds the same (is a homonym of) as the word “know” meaning “to be sure of and well informed about”. Write the word “know” below the letters “Kno”. So the meaning of the name is “Know nothing”. However, an art critic is suppose know a lot about art. They are supposed to be experts. It is funny because his name is the opposite of what the art critic is suppose to be.

8. The second naming joke is with the art buyer. “Drachmas” is the Greek word for money. Of course, money is what you use to buy things. It is funny to have a person who is buying things named after money.

9. Conclusion: Words help us say what we are feeling or doing. Each word has a meaning that helps us say just exactly what we want to say. Today you learned ten more words and you learned that words can also be used all by themselves to tell little jokes, like an art critic whose name means he doesn’t know anything and an art buyer who’s name means money.

Book for Lesson Plan

Little Bianca

A charmingly illustrated story of a young girl and her artist poppa.

Size: 8 ½ in. W X 11 in. H
52 color pages
ISBN: 0-9779576-0-8
Price: $15.95

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