Homeschool Share: an online homeschool curriculum cooperative hosting over 500 unit studies, lapbooks, printables, and other resources.

Free Raggedy Andy Unit & Lapbook
The Raggedy Andy Stories
Introducing the Little Rag Brother of Raggedy Ann

Written and Illustrated by Johnny Gruelle

Unit and Lapbook Prepared by Kim Moss
This book is available for FREE on-line; it contains the complete collection of stories.
This book is available at, but does not include The New Tin Gutter, Doctor Raggedy Andy, or The Singing Shell.


Lapbook Templates

Vocabulary Cards with Pocket

France Flag

Taffy Accordion
Extra Cards
Holland Shutterfold

Color Chart

Johnny Gruelle & Buffalo Bill

Holland Flag

All About Rabbits Layer Book

Cotton Flap Book

Tea Party Mini Book

Skilled Workers Simple Fold

Cartoon Strip

Sugar Wheel

Metals Accordion

Lapbook Cover

All About Mice Tab Book

Wild West Show Shutterfold

France Shutterfold

Label a Circle Simple Fold

Seashell Flap Book

Adjective Simple Fold




Social Studies –


Character (cheeriness and happiness) – “One day Daddy took Raggedy Ann down to his office and propped her up against some books upon his desk; he wanted to have her where he could see her cheery smile all day, for, as you must surely know, smiles and happiness are truly catching.

Daddy wished to catch a whole lot of Raggedy Ann's cheeriness and happiness and put all this down on paper, so that those who did not have Raggedy Ann dolls might see just how happy and smiling a rag doll can be.


“So Raggedy Ann stayed at Daddy's studio for three or four days.  She was missed very, very much at home and Marcella really longed for her, but knew that Daddy was borrowing some of Raggedy Ann's sunshine, so she did not complain.  Raggedy Ann did not complain either, for in addition to the sunny, happy smile she always wore (it was painted on), Raggedy Ann had a candy heart, and of course no one (not even a rag doll) ever complains if they have such happiness about them.”


Ask your child if God considers cheeriness and happiness important.  If so, why would they be important?  How could they impact upon others?


Proverbs 15:13, 30 – A happy heart makes the face cheerful…A cheerful look brings joy to the heart and good news health to the bones.


Proverbs 17:22 – A cheerful heart is good medicine…


James 5:13 – Is anyone happy?  Let him sing songs…


How can happiness and cheerfulness bring health to someone?  How do you feel when you’re around someone who’s happy or cheerful?

Biography of author Johnny Gruelle –

Johnny Gruelle, Creator of Raggedy Ann and Andy by Patricia Hall

Raggedy Ann & Andy: a Retrospective Celebrating 85 years of Storybook Friends artwork & story by Johnny Gruelle; written by Patricia Hall

The Raggedy Ann and Andy Family Album by Susan Ann Garrison


Help your child use or have your child use one of the resources above to discover more about Johnny Gruelle.  Where and when was he born?  Did he have brothers and sisters?  What was his father’s occupation?  How/why did Johnny Gruelle begin telling the stories of Raggedy Ann?  What other talents did Johnny Gruelle have besides author and cartoonist?  What was the “Gruelle Ideal”?  What was his first job as an illustrator?  How many books did he write?  When did he die?


History (The Past vs. Now) -

Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy hadn’t seen each other in over 50 years!  Ask your child how they would feel if they hadn’t talked to their brother/sister in 50 years?  What has changed in our country in the last 50 years?  Go through the chart below with your child explaining/talking about how things have changed since the book was written in 1919 and in the last 50 years, filling out the column for the current year with them.  Your older child could do research and complete the entire chart on their own.






President of the US

Woodrow Wilson

Dwight D. Eisenhower



Ragtime, Blues

Rock and Roll,

Elvis Presley


World Events

World War I ended

Treaty of Versailles signed

Cold War, The British Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition completes the first land journey across Antarctica,

Khrushchev becomes Premier of Soviet Union


US Events

“Red” (Communist) Scare

18th (Prohibition) and 19th (Woman’s right to vote) Amendments to Constitution

National Aeronautics and Space Act passes,

Civil Rights Commission Established,

Integration of schools



Silent Films, Vaudeville

Academy Award, Best Picture: The Bridge on the River Kwai



Babe Ruth traded to the Yankees

1st Triple Crown won in Horse Racing by Sir Barton

New York Giants become the San Francisco Giants.

The Brooklyn Dodgers become the Los Angeles Dodgers


Most Popular TV Shows


Ed Sullivan Show, I Love Lucy, Leave it to Beaver, Gunsmoke, Perry Mason, Dragnet, Alfred Hitchcock Presents



1st Radio Station in Pittsburgh or Detroit 1920,

Dial Telephones introduced

First transatlantic jet passenger service


Most Popular Toys

Raggedy Ann, Lincoln Logs, Radio Flyer Wagon, Pogo Stick

Tonka Trucks, Play-doh, Hula Hoop, Frisbee, Yahtzee, Ant Farm


Price of 1st Class Stamp




Price of Gasoline




Price of Average US Home




Price of 1 Gallon Milk




Price of Automobile




Average Income







Science –


Rubber Bands –

“Raggedy Andy had been carefully folded up.  His soft, loppy arms were folded up in front of him and his soft, loppy legs were folded over his soft, loppy arms, and they were held this way by a rubber band.”  The first rubber band was made in 1845 by Stephen Perry of the rubber manufacturing company Messrs. Perry and Co., in London, England. It was made of vulcanized rubber.  Explain to your child that vulcanized rubber has been treated with sulfur and heat which makes it stronger and gives it greater elasticity and durability.


Try on of these rubber band experiments with your child:

Experiment #1—Making a Catapult


Materials: A sturdy, narrow cardboard box (like a shoe box), two rubber bands, a plastic spoon, scissors, masking tape, and a ping-pong ball or marshmallow.



Cut two vertical slits about 3/4 inch down and 1/2 inch apart along the top and near the center of the long sides of a cardboard box with scissors.

Cut two more vertical slits below the original ones in the center of the long sides of the box.

Cut one additional horizontal slit connecting the bottoms of the two slits you just made, so the cuts form u-shaped slits.

Slip the ends of a rubber band around each of the u-shaped slits so the rubber band is stretched across the box. Tape the rubber band securely in place.

Slip the ends of a second rubber band around the slits in the top of the box and tape the ends of the rubber band.

Place the handle of a plastic spoon through the top rubber band and twist it around several times until the spoon is held securely in the center of the box.  Make sure that the direction you twist creates a forward tension on the concave side of the spoon.

Place the handle of the spoon against the lower rubber band to create tension and a springing action.

Pull back the spoon, place the marshmallow or ping-pong ball inside, and release!


Experiment #2—Friction

Materials: a rubber band, a shoe, ruler


Cut the rubber band, so that you have a long string of rubber.

Tie one end to a shoe. Set the shoe on the floor.

Pull gently on the other end of the rubber band and gradually pull harder and harder until the shoe begins to move.

Use the ruler to measure how long the rubber band stretches before the shoe begins to move. Before it begins to move, it is experiencing static friction between the shoe and the floor.

Once the shoe starts moving, measure how far the rubber band is stretched as you keep it moving. Once you get the shoe moving, there is less friction to resist its movement. You will probably notice that it is not stretched as far as when you were trying to get it started. When it was sitting still, you had to overcome the static friction (as well as inertia) to get it going. Once it is going, you have to contend with kinetic friction (the length of the rubber band at it’s farthest before the shoe starts moving), which is less than static friction (the length of the rubber band once the shoe is moving)

Now try changing the amount of friction by using a different surface. You could try using a different surface like aluminum foil, then taping the aluminum foil to the floor and rubbing it with cooking oil. You could add some weight by putting something heavy like rocks into the shoe. You could try adding some roughness by pouring some salt or sugar or sand paper under the shoe.  Tape the foil to the floor and rub it with a little cooking oil. Measure the static and kinetic friction each time you vary the experiment.


Cotton –
There were cotton lumps in the throats of Raggedy Ann and Andy. This was the material used to stuff the rag dolls. Does your child know where cotton comes from? Cotton needs a warm climate to grow in.  See if your child can guess where it might be grown.  The United States, Uzbekistan, China, India, Brazil, Pakistan and Turkey are the major cotton producing countries in the world. In the United States the states of Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Florida, Kansas and Virginia are known as the “Cotton Belt”.  Cotton is planted from February to June, depending on the climate. About two months after planting, flower buds appear on the cotton plants. Three weeks later the blossoms open. Their petals change from creamy white to yellow to pink and finally, dark red. After three days, they wither and fall, leaving green football-shaped pods which are called cotton bolls. As the boll ripens, it turns brown. Finally, the boll splits apart and the fluffy cotton bursts forth. It looks like white cotton candy. The next step is to harvest the cotton crop using machines.  The harvested cotton is then placed into a “cotton gin” where the burs, dirt, stems, leaves and seeds are removed.  The seed goes on to be planted for the next harvest, become paper or become cottonseed oil!  The cotton is then cleaned more, carded, spun into thread and woven into cloth.  Discuss the journey of cotton with your child.  Show him fabric made from cotton as well as a cotton ball.  Compare this to other fabrics.


National Cotton Council of America

Cotton Incorporated


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Have your child start a vocabulary list or make cards for all the interesting words they will encounter throughout the book.

Prop to support, or prevent from falling

            Studio – the workroom of an artist

            Loppy – hanging limply


Writing a Friendly Letter –

The book contains a friendly letter from Raggedy Andy’s Mama to Johnny Gruelle and also from Johnny Gruelle’s mother to him.  Explain the components of a friendly letter (heading, salutation, body, complimentary close and signature) to your child and have them write one to a grandparent, friend or even one of their stuffed animals or dolls!


Math –


“Daddy knew they would wish to tell each other all the wonderful things that had happened to them since they had parted more than fifty years before.” Raggedy Ann and Andy have not seen each other for fifty years. Find the date on the letter written by Andy’s Mama. The year was 1919. What year would it have been fifty years previous to then? Show your child how to subtract 1919 – 50 = 1869. Raggedy Ann and Andy had not seen each other since at least 1869!

Johnny Gruelle was born December 24, 1880 and died January 8, 1938.  How old was he when he died?  Show your child how to subtract  1938 – 1880 = 58 and then explain that even though the answer is 58 Johnny Gruelle was 57 when he died as he had not reached his birthday yet in 1938.


Art –

Muted Colors
Johnny Gruelle uses many muted colors in his illustrations.  Review primary, secondary and complementary colors with your child. Muted colors are colors that have been toned down or softened using black, white or a complementary color. Another way to explain it is that colors that have had their intensity or brightness dulled are considered muted.  We also refer to intensity as the degree of saturation in a color.

There are four ways to change the intensity of a color:

1. Add white. This will make the value higher (lighter) and change the intensity.
2. Add black. This will make the value lower (darker) and change the intensity.
3. Add gray. If the gray is the same value as the original color, the intensity will change, but not the value.
4. Add a complementary color. (Mixing two colors exactly opposite each other on the color wheel results in a neutral gray or brown)

Have your child experiment with making muted colors using any or all of the 4 ways listed above.


Cartoons –
Johnny Gruelle started his career as a cartoonist.  The American Heritage Dictionary defines a cartoon as “A drawing depicting a humorous situation, often accompanied by a caption.”  Explain this to your child.  Show your child comic strips and appropriate political cartoons from the newspaper.  Have your child create their own cartoon with captions.


Lapbook –

Vocabulary Cards with Pocket & Extra Cards

Johnny Gruelle Simple Fold

Cotton Flap Book

Cartoon Strip
Lapbook Cover


Social Studies –


Character (treatment of disabled people) –

“Some of the dolls were without arms and legs.  One had a cracked head. She was a nice doll, though, and the others all liked her very much.  All of them had cried the night Susan (that was her name) fell off the toy box and cracked her china head.”


Ask your child what makes him or her special?  What about their eye or hair color?  How about athletic talent or academic skills?  Guide him/her in a discussion about being made special by God.


Would he or she be special with 6 fingers on each hand?  Why?  What about only 4 fingers?  If God gives someone a “special” gift because they have more physical or mental abilities than others, is a person any less “special” because they have less physical or mental abilities than others?


Psalm 139:13-16 – For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.  When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.  All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.


Is anyone who is not like you or me any less of a special creation made by God?


Nationality -

In the nursery there was a French doll, Henny, and a Dutch doll, Uncle Clem. Ask your child where a French doll would come from? France! Ask your child where a Dutch doll would come from? Holland! Locate these places on a map with your child.  Explain to your child what it means to be a certain nationality.  American Heritage Dictionary defines it as “people having common origins or traditions and often comprising a nation”.  Ask your child how they would describe their nationality?

Having Tea -

The British custom of having afternoon tea began in the times of Charles II and reached its height of popularity in the Victorian Era.   Have an afternoon tea of your own!  Invite your friends or do like Marcella does and have tea with your dolls and stuffed animals!  A formal tea would be an occasion for dressing up.  You should also dress up the table with pretty decorations, dishes and a tablecloth.  Ask each guest if they want cream or sugar or lemon in their tea.  You should pour the cream in first and then the tea.  Make sure that each guest has a spoon to stir their tea and a saucer to put their spoon on when they are done stirring.  Use your very best manners! There are lots of recipes available on the internet or check out some books from your local library.    


Teatime with Emma Buttersnap by Lindsey Tate

The Totally Tea-rific Tea Party Book by Tanya Napier


Science –


Sugar –
Marcella gave the dolls sugar water for their tea. We all know how sweet sugar tastes, but does your child know where sugar comes from?

Most of the sugar we use is made from sugar cane and sugar beets.  These plants grow in different climates (sugar cane in the tropics and sugar beets in temperate zones)

Sugar cane stalks grow from old stalks planted in the ground. Their growing season is 7-22 months and when it is over the stalks are 7 to 15 feet tall.  The stalks are then cut and taken to a sugar mill.


At the sugar mill, machines wash, cut, and shred the stalks into pulp. Water is sprayed on it and it is crushed between rollers to squeeze out the sugary juice which is called cane juice.  The cane juice is then heated to a boil and chemicals are added to remove impurities. Then juice is put into huge heated tanks to evaporate, making thick syrup and finally crystals. The crystals are then separated from the syrup and become “raw sugar”.  This raw sugar goes to a refinery.  At the refinery it is dissolved, treated with chemicals, filtered, crystallized again, and allowed to solidify into pure white sugar.

Beet sugar is made in almost the same way as cane sugar. The beets are sliced and soaked with chemicals to make sugary syrup. This syrup is also filtered and evaporated until it also becomes pure white sugar.

Adding together the table sugar we use with soft drinks, baked goods, candy, canned fruits, jellies, and desserts, an average person in the United States eats 100 pounds of sugar a year!

Have your student try growing sugar crystals:


Materials:  Food Coloring, Glass Jars, Oven Mitts, Saucepans, Stirring Spoons, Pencils, Paper and Binder Clips, Cotton String, and 3 cups of sugar.



Boil about 1 cup of water.

Pour the water into a glass jar.

Slowly stir in three cups of sugar, about a teaspoon at a time. Don't rush this step!

Continue until the sugar is no longer dissolving but is starting to collect at the bottom of the jar.

Add a couple drops of food coloring of your choice.

Tie one end of a piece of string around the middle of a pencil and tie a paper clip to the other end.

Place the pencil over the jar so that the string hangs down and the paper clip almost touches the bottom of the jar.

Allow jar to sit someplace where it won’t be disturbed.

In about 24 hours you'll see colorful crystals forming on the paper clip.




Colic –
Explain to your student that colic condition in which an otherwise healthy baby cries or screams intensely more than three days a week, for more than three hours, for more than three weeks in a month for no discernible reason.   There are many ideas as to the cause, but nothing which is generally accepted to be the cause.


Mice –
Raggedy Andy replied, "for there was always a nest of mice down in the corner of the trunk. Cute little Mama and Daddy mice, and lots of little teeny weeny baby mice. And when the mama and daddy mice were away, I used to cuddle the tiny little baby mice!"  Does your child know about mice?  Ask your child if they are a mammal or not, and if so what characteristics make an animal a mammal.  Explain to your child that mice are rodents.  Rodents are mammals that have two incisors in both the upper and lower jaw which grow continuously and must be kept worn down by gnawing. The name comes from the Latin rodere, to gnaw, and dens, dentis, tooth. These teeth are used for cutting wood, biting through the skin of fruit, or for defense. The teeth self-sharpen during gnawing!  Young mice are called “pups”.  Predators of mice include cats, wild dogs, foxes, birds of prey, snakes and even certain kinds of insects.  Mice eat mainly seeds and nuts.  Mice can be harmful pests, but are also pets. Baby mice weigh from ½ to 1 ½ grams when they are born (a penny weighs about 3 grams!).  Have your student hold a penny in their hand and tell him that would be how much 2-3 newborn mice would weigh!


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

            Mistress – a female who has authority, control, or power

            Merely And nothing else or more; simply; only

Fidget – To move about restlessly, nervously, or impatiently.


Reading in Context –
This chapter mentions “Fido”, but doesn’t tell you what/who “Fido” is. Can your child, by reading the facts revolved around Fido, tell what Fido is?


Math –


Counting up to 10 –
“If Raggedy Ann had a pencil in her rag hand and Marcella guided it for her, Raggedy Ann could count up to ten—sometimes.”  Can your young child count to ten? Gather ten objects (maybe their favorite stuffed animals and dolls!) and practice their 10 facts (
addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division -- depending on the level of the student).


Lapbook –

France Shutterfold
France Flag

Holland Shutterfold
Holland Flag

Tea Party Mini Book

Sugar Wheel

All About Mice Tab Book



Social Studies –


Character (Being content in every situation) (Raggedy Andy locked in trunk)


"Wasn't it very lonesome in the trunk all that time?" Susan asked in her queer little cracked voice. You see, her head had been cracked. "Oh, not at all," Raggedy Andy replied, "for there was always a nest of mice down in the corner of the trunk. Cute little Mama and Daddy mice, and lots of little teeny weeny baby mice. And when the mama and daddy mice were away, I used to cuddle the tiny little baby mice!" "No wonder you were never lonesome!" said Uncle Clem, who was very kind and loved everybody and everything.”


Ask your child how he/she would feel after being in the box/blanket for about an hour.  How was Raggedy Andy so cheerful after being locked in a trunk for 50 years?  How can your child learn to be content/happy/satisfied in every situation?


The Apostle Paul declared in Philippians 4:11-12, “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstance…I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation.”


Ask your child what they think was Paul’s secret to being content?


Paul continued in verse 13 to declare, “I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”


The writer of Hebrews also says, “Be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’  So we say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid.  What can man do to me?’”


How can God’s continual presence and help lead to contentment?  How should we live knowing that he is present and helping us every day?


Character (Being encouraging to one another; Helping one another)
"Yes, Raggedy Ann can sew it on!" all the dolls cried. "She can play Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater on the toy piano and she can sew!"

“There was a wild scramble as the dolls rushed for their beds, and Susan, having to be careful of her cracked head, was the monkey. So Raggedy Andy, seeing that Susan was slow about getting into her bed, jumped out and helped her.”

Ask your child to tell you of a time when a sibling or friend was hurt or feeling sad and they tried to help.  What did they do to help or encourage the other person?  What was the result?


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Romp - a lively or boisterous time of merry play

Amuse - to hold the attention of someone pleasantly; entertain or divert in an enjoyable or cheerful manner

Scuffle - to go or move in hurried confusion

Lopsided - heavier, larger, or more developed on one side than on the other; unevenly balanced; unsymmetrical


Nursery Rhymes –

"Yes, Raggedy Ann can sew it on!" all the dolls cried. "She can play Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater on the toy piano and she can sew!"

The dolls refer to a nursery rhyme in this chapter.  Snuggle up and read more nursery rhymes with your child.  Have your older child write a nursery rhyme of their own.


Math –


Diameter/Circumference –
Does your older child know what the diameter of a circle is and how to calculate circumference?  Explain that the diameter is the longest distance from one end of a circle to another and that circumference is the distance around the outside or perimeter of a circle.  The equation for calculating the circumference is ∏ (3.14) x the diameter of a circle.  Ask you child what they think the diameter of the spinning wheel that Raggedy Ann and Andy played with was.  Then ask you child how many times around they think Raggedy Andy went on the spinning wheel.  Finally, have your child calculate the circumference of the spinning wheel and then how far Raggedy Andy went on the spinning wheel using the answers that they gave you.


Art –


Sewing – Does your child know how to sew?  Show your child a needle, thread and thimble and how to use them.  Let your child practice sewing two pieces of fabric together.


Just for fun –

Have a pillow fight with your child!


Chapter 4 - THE TAFFY PULL

Social Studies –

Character (Joy in Giving) –“Then, just as a little boy and a little girl, who looked as though they did not ever have much candy, passed the house, the dolls all gave a push and sent the bag tumbling to the sidewalk.  The two children laughed and shouted, "Thank you," when they saw that the bag contained candy, and the dolls, peeping from behind the lace curtains, watched the two happy faced children eating the taffy as they skipped down the street.  When the children had passed out of sight, the dolls climbed down from the window.  "That was lots of fun!" said the French doll, as she smoothed her skirts and sat down beside Raggedy Andy.  "I believe Raggedy Andy must have a candy heart too, like Raggedy Ann!" said Uncle Clem.”

Give your child an unexpected “gift” such as a snack, a big hug, a special book time or some other favorite thing or event.  Afterwards, ask your child how he/she feels about being given the gift.


Next, tell your child how you feel about given them the gift.


James 1:17 – Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.


1 Cor 9:7 – Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.


Science –


Making Taffy -



 2 cups sugar 

 2 tablespoons cornstarch (helps to give the taffy a smooth texture)           

 1 cup light corn syrup (acts as an “interfering agent” along with butter to keep the sucrose molecules in the taffy syrup from crystallizing)        

 2 teaspoons glycerin (optional, can be found in craft stores and helps to make the taffy light)      

 3/4 cup water

 2 tablespoons butter  

 1 teaspoon salt          

 1/4 to 1 teaspoon flavoring (such as vanilla, lemon, maple, or mint)           

 3 drops food coloring (optional)        

 a large (3- to 4-quart) saucepan       

 a wooden spoon          

 a candy thermometer             

 a pastry brush             

 waxed paper or plastic wrap   

 a marble slab or cookie sheet             

 greased scissors or butter knife          



Mix together sugar and cornstarch in the saucepan.  The cornstarch will give the taffy a smooth texture.

Use a wooden spoon to stir in the corn syrup, glycerin, water, butter, and salt.
The corn syrup
acts as an interfering agent along with butter to keep the sucrose molecules in the taffy syrup from crystallizing;  the glycerin helps to make the taffy fluffy and light.

Place the saucepan over medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves.

Continue stirring until mixture begins to boil, then let cook, undisturbed (if you continue to stir at this point sugar crystals will form), until it reaches about 270° For the soft-crack stage (you’ll know you are at the soft-crack stage because when you drop a bit of this syrup into cold water the solid thread that form will be flexible and bend before breaking)

Wash down the sides of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in warm water while the syrup cooks to prevent sugar crystals from forming.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and add food coloring and flavoring. Stir gently, then pour onto a greased marble slab or into a shallow greased cookie sheet until cool.

When the taffy is cool enough to handle, grease your hands with oil or butter and pull the taffy until it's light in color and has a satiny gloss. Pulling the taffy adds air to the candy and is what makes it light and fluffy.  You can have a friend help with this step, which should take about 10 minutes.

Roll the pulled taffy into a long rope, about 1/2 inch in diameter, and cut it with greased scissors or a butter knife into 1-inch-long pieces. Let the pieces sit for about half an hour before wrapping them in wax paper or plastic wrap and twisting the ends of the wrapper.


Just for fun

Try the experiment above and have a taffy pull of your own!


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Encase - to enclose in or as in a case

Scarcely - barely; hardly; not quite

Dispose of - to transfer or give away, as by gift or sale. to do away with; destroy


Lapbook -

Label a Circle Simple Fold

Science of Taffy Accordion



Science –


Rabbits – Does your child know about rabbits?  Ask your child if they are a mammal and if they answer yes ask them what characteristics rabbits have that make them a mammal.   Their classification is as follows: Kingdom: Animalia, Phylum: Chordata, Class: Mammalia, Order: Lagomorpha, Family: Leporidae.  Rabbits are ground dwellers that live in desert, tropical and wetland environments. Rabbits are found in Europe, Central and Southern Africa, the Indian subcontinent, Sumatra, and Japan.  They are “herbivores”.  Does your child know what an herbivore is? All rabbits except the cottontail rabbit live underground in burrows or warrens. Hares and cottontail rabbits live in simple nests above the ground.  They usually do not live in groups.


Sense of Smell – "It was a rabbit!" Fido cried. "He ran right in here, for I could smell his tracks!"

Explain to your child how our sense of smell works.  Everything that has an odor gives off little “odor molecules”.  These tiny little molecules are too small for us to see and float through the air into our nose. These molecules have matching smell receptors on our olfactory nerve.  When these molecules "tickle" the nerve endings of our olfactory nerve, (which is like an electrical wire on a telephone) the olfactory nerve carries the message to our brain and tells us what we smell. This nerve is located high up on the nasal passage. We don't always smell an odor right away because it takes time for the small particles to travel in the air and then into your nose to the nerve endings. Dogs have about 25 times more olfactory (smell) receptors than humans do.  Dogs can sense odors at concentrations nearly 100 milLion times lower than humans can.

Can your child rely on their sense of smell to solve a mystery? Blindfold them and hold up different types of food or spices to their nose one at a time. Can they tell what you are holding up just by the smell?


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Shrill - high-pitched and piercing in sound quality

Heap - a group of things placed, thrown, or lying one on another; pile

Crouch - to bend close to the ground, as an animal preparing to spring or shrinking with fear

Suspect - To surmise to be true or probable; imagine


Art –


Colors -

The Easter bunny had to dye the eggs “lots of pretty colors”.  Discuss primary (blue, yellow, red) and secondary (purple, orange, green) colors with your child.  Have your child mix the primary colors and see if they can discover which combinations of primary colors make the secondary colors.  Let your child use the colors they have made to make a painting of their own.


Lapbook -

Color Chart

All About Rabbits Layer Book


Social Studies –


Skilled Workers –
"We will send a man right up to fix it!" the men said.

So along about ten o'clock that morning one of the men came to fix the pipe.

But although he punched a long pole down the pipe, and punched and punched, he could not dislodge whatever it was which plugged the pipe and kept the water from running through it. Then the man measured with his stick, so that he knew just where the place was, and with a pair of tin shears he cut a section from the pipe and found Raggedy Andy.”


Explain to your child that some jobs involve having a particular skill, like the men putting up the rain gutters at Marcella’s house.  Ask your child to think of and name other jobs that require having a particular skill.


Science –


Metals/Tin –
“The men made quite a lot of noise with their hammers, for they were putting new gutters around the eaves, and pounding upon tin makes a great deal of noise.”

Metals have three properties
1) Luster - Metals are shiny when cut, scratched, or polished.

2)  Malleability - Metals are strong, but can be easily bent or shaped. Most metals are also ductile, which means they can be drawn out to make wire.  
3)  Conductivity - Metals are excellent conductors of electricity and heat. Because they are also ductile, they are ideal for electrical wiring.  There are five categories of metals:

Noble Metals are found as pure metals because they are unreactive and don't combine with other elements. They don't corrode easily so they are ideal for jewelry and coins. Noble metals include copper, palladium, silver, platinum, and gold.

Alkali Metals are very reactive. They have low melting points and are soft enough to be cut with a knife. Potassium and sodium are two alkali metals.

Alkaline Earth Metals are found in compounds with many different minerals. They are less reactive than alkali metals, harder, and have higher melting points. This group includes calcium, magnesium, and barium.

Transition Metals are hard and shiny, strong, and easy to shape. They are used for many industrial purposes. This group includes iron, gold, silver, chromium, nickel, and copper, some of which are also noble metals.

Poor Metals are fairly soft, and most are not used very much by themselves. They become very useful when added to other substances, though. Poor metals include aluminum, gallium, tin, thallium, antimony, and bismuth.


The properties of these different metals can be combined by mixing two or more of them together. When two or metals are mixed the new substance is called an alloy.



Gather a metal spoon, wooden spoon, and other kitchen utensils to compare heat conductivity. Set them in a glass jar of hot (not boiling) water.  Which utensils heat up fastest and what are they made of? The ends of the metal utensils should have felt hot first, because they conduct heat better. For a little more excitement, try again using only metal utensils, with a dab of cold butter on top of each utensil. Which one loses its butter first? Why might that be? Look at the top surface area (e.g., a wire whisk has less surface to heat the butter than a ladle does), length and thickness of each utensil's handle for clues.  Remember that some metals conduct heat better than others do.


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Eave - the overhang at the lower edge of a roof 

Scoot - to send or impel at high speed

Dislodge - to remove or force out of a particular place

Customary - according to or depending on custom; usual; habitual


Math –


Measuring –“Then the man measured with his stick, so that he knew just where the place was, and with a pair of tin shears he cut a section from the pipe and found Raggedy Andy.”


Does your child know how to measure things?  Review the metric and U.S. units of measure.  Give your child a ruler and yardstick with both metric and U.S. units of measure and have them measure various objects.


US Length/Distance Measurement

Term   Abbreviation    Symbol            Equivalents

inch     in.                    "                       1"

foot      ft.                     '                       12" = 1'

yard     yd.                   (none)              36" = 3' = 1 yd.

mile     mi.                   (none)              5280' = 1 mi.



Length/Distance Conversion

US System     Metric System

1 in.                 2.54 cm

1 yd.                91.44 cm

1 mi.                1.609 km


Art –


Tin Can Candleholder – Let your child experience working with tin.  This craft will need supervision as it involves a hammer and nail.  With a younger child you could do the hammering and just let them make up the pattern. Wash a tin can and remove the label.  Fill the can almost to the top with water and then set it in your freezer.  You can either make a paper pattern the size of the can or you can free hand a design. If you use a paper pattern tape the paper on after the water has frozen. Now, take your hammer and nail and punch a hole and follow the lines of your design. The frozen water helps keep the can in its original shape.  After the design is all done let the water thaw. When the can is completely dry you can now paint the can or leave it in its original color.



Skilled Workers Simple Fold

Metals Accordion


Social Studies –


Character (Helping Others) –

Raggedy Andy helps the French doll when the sugary medicine gets inside her head and prevents her eyes from moving.


Lie on the floor and tell your child you don’t feel well, then see what they do to help you feel better (but be sure to listen that they don’t pick up the phone and call 911!!).  If your child does do something, ask him or her why they did what they did to help you.  Explain how you felt when they helped you.

Safety with Medicine –
Discuss with your child the importance of not playing with real medicine.  While it is fun to pretend to give medicine to their dolls and toys it is never safe to play with real medicine.  Remind them that they should never take medicine unless it is given to them by their parents or a doctor who knows the correct type and amount to take.


Science –


Music boxes –

Do you have a music box or can you borrow one?  Explain to your child how a music box works.


A music box is an instrument that plays tunes automatically. Steel pins come out from a rotating cylinder driven by clockwork or a spring. The pins pluck metal teeth of various lengths, producing soft, high-pitched sounds. Several teeth may be tuned to the same note, so that the box can repeat notes rapidly. Music boxes may be connected with clocks and play certain tunes on the hour. Music-box movements are built into watches, toys, and other everyday objects.


The main parts of a music box
-The Comb:
The comb is a piece of steel in which the teeth have been cut.  It is then tuned to reproduce the musical notes, for each tune.

-The cylinder:
The cylinder is usually made of brass. It holds the pins, which lift up the teeth of the comb. These pins are held in place by resin inside the cylinder. The pins are in steel and their position is determined by the tune.

-The spring-housing:
This is a spring mechanism which is wound up with a key.  It allows the musical movement to work.

-The speed governor:
The speed governor, or regulator, controls the speed at which the spring unwinds and makes sure there is a regular rhythm for the music.

-The base-plate:
All the parts of the movement are put together on a base plate, usually in brass.

-The box:
The movement is fitted into a box, most often made of wood. The box transmits the sound and works as an amplifier. Because wood is a living material it makes each box a unique piece


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –







Art –


Music/Emotion –

“Raggedy Andy again wound up the little music box and, catching the French doll about the waist, started a rollicking dance which lasted until the roosters in the neighborhood began their morning crowing.”

Play different genres of music for your child.  Have your child listen and even dance to it if they feel like it.  Ask you child how each piece of music makes them feel and dance.



Social Studies –


Character (Selfishness)

“It always gave them great pleasure when any of their number was hugged and kissed, for there was not a selfish doll among them.”


Ask your child, “What is selfishness?”  “Why are we so concerned about taking care of ourselves?”  Do you trust Mommy and Daddy to take of you?”  “Do you trust God to take care of you?”  Examine their answers and any fears they may express.


Matt 6:25-34 – Therefore I tell you , do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink or about your body, what you will wear…Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not much more valuable than they…But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.


Science –


Acid – “The orange juice takes off part of Raggedy Andy’s smile”

Explain to your child that orange juice is an acid and acids can clean and take dirt off of things.  Cut a piece of fabric into three pieces and have your child paint a smile with paint (not watercolor) on each one.  Then place each piece in a glass or water, orange juice, apple juice and see what happens to the smiles.


Language Arts –


Vocabulary -

Mechanism an assembly of moving parts performing a complete functional motion, often being part of a large machine; linkage.

Mischievous maliciously or playfully annoying; causing annoyance, harm, or trouble

Chink a narrow opening


Adjectives, Dictionary Skills -

Explain to your child that an adjective is a word that describes a noun.  Send them on an “adjective hunt” in this or any other chapter and make a list of all the adjectives they find.  For an added challenge have them alphabetize their list once they have found all their adjectives.


Just for fun -

All the dolls “freeze” when the cheery man came into the nursery.  Play a game of freeze tag with your child.


Lapbook –

Adjective Simple Fold



Social Studies –


Character (Joy of giving pleasure) – “The wooden horse, a thrill of happiness running through his wooden body, cried, "It is the most fun I have ever had!" And the dolls, while they did not tell him so, knew that he had had the most fun because he had given them the most pleasure. For, as you must surely know, they who are the most unselfish are the ones who gain the greatest joy; because they give happiness to others.”


Ask your child, “Which would you rather have happen: to receive a gift from Mommy or to give a gift to Mommy?”  Ask your child the reason(s) for his/her answer.


            Acts 20:35 – It is more blessed to give than to receive.


Science –


Movement –

The wooden horse moves by making his tail frisk.  Explain to your child that the energy the wooden horse uses to move his tail becomes transferred or changed into energy that makes him roll on his wheels.  Help your child see this by moving a jump rope or something similar in a wave-like motion and seeing how it moves.


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Dappled having spots of a different shade, tone, or color from the background; mottled.

Hitch to fasten or tie, esp. temporarily, by means of a hook, rope, strap, etc.; tether

Queer strange or odd from a conventional viewpoint; unusually different; singular

Bashful uncomfortably diffident and easily embarrassed; shy; timid.

Frisk to dance, leap, skip, or gambol; frolic


Just for Fun--

Wild West Show

The Wild West show was started in 1882 by William Cody (aka Buffalo Bill).  Read through the following articles with your child and look through the photos.  Have your child write a brief biography of Buffalo Bill and draw a picture of an act that would have been in the Wild West Show.  Ask your older child what they think of Native Americans being treated this way.


Lapbook –

Buffalo Bill Cody Simple Fold

Wild West Show Shutterfold



Language Arts –


Vocabulary –

Briskly - quick and active; lively

Frolic - merry play; merriment; gaiety; fun

Sopping - soaked; drenched

Limber – to make something bend readily; be flexible; be pliant


Art –


Draw A Winter Scene -

Raggedy Andy admires the beauty of winter.  Have your child create a winter scene using their choice of media.


Just for Fun –

Make snow or sand angels with your child.



Social Studies –


Character (Don’t judge someone by their appearance) -

"That is why the shell is so beautiful inside!" said Raggedy Ann. "Those who are unselfish may wear rough clothes, but inside they are always beautiful, just like the shell, and reflect to others the happiness and sunny music within their hearts!"


Take a plastic Easter egg shell or an empty box that you’ll wrap in gift wrapping.  Place some dirt or other repulsive item in the shell or box.  Give it to your child and look for excitement or joy at receiving the gift (conversely, find a dirty, ugly box and put a “nice” gift inside).  This will help illustrate the point about “judging a book by its cover.”


            I Samuel 16:7 – But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him.  The LORD does not look at the things man looks at.  Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”


Science –


Seashells -

“The coloring consisted of dainty pinks, creamy whites and pale blues, all running together just as the coloring in an opal runs from one shade into another. Raggedy Andy, stooping over to look further up inside the pretty shell, heard something.

"It's whispering!" he said, as he raised up in surprise.”

Has your child ever “listened to the ocean” by holding a seashell up to their ear?  If you can get a shell to do this the best one is a conch shell.  You don't even need a seashell to hear the noise. You can produce the same "ocean" sound using an empty cup or even by cupping your hand over your ear.  Explain to your child that seashells don’t really make any sound of their own. Inside they have many hard curved surfaces, which reflect or bounce off sound. Any sound waves that get inside are jumbled up by all kinds of echoes. When you hold the shell up to your ear, you hear the noise of all those jumbled-up echoes. That does sound much like the noise of ocean waves beating against a shore! Different shells sound different because different shells intensify different frequencies. Change the distance or angle at which your child places the cup or shell near their ear.   Try it in a noisy room and in a quiet room.  Noise from outside the shell also can change the intensity of the sound you hear inside the shell since it reflects sound from its environment.


Language Arts –


Vocabulary –


            Daintyof delicate beauty; exquisite


Using Comparison to Convey a Picture -

Johnny Gruelle uses comparison to help the reader picture the scene he is writing about.  Explain this technique to your child and have them point out when he does this as they read or listen to your read.  There are several places in the book where he does this. Here are some examples:

Have your older child write a short story using this technique.

Chapter 8--Raggedy Andy's Smile

"Raggedy Andy looked up into a cheery little round face, with a little red nose and red cheeks, and all framed in white whiskers which looked just like snow."


Chapter 4--The Taffy Pull

"This snipped the taffy into small pieces, just as easily as you might break icicles with a few sharp taps of a stick."


Art –


Drawing Curves – Look through the illustrations in Raggedy Andy with your child having them point out curves and waves in the lines of the drawings.  Once they can identify curves and waves easily have them do this fun drawing activity.  On a white piece of paper have them use a pen or pencil to draw a continuous line of loops, waves, curls, etc.  When they are done have them look at what they have drawn and find objects or shapes in it.  Have them color what they find!


Lapbook –

Seashell Flap Book