A Full Day of Fun with My Big Dog Activities for Kindergarten

My Big Dog (which is narrated by a cat named Merl) is the purrrrfect Fun Friday book!  It is full of educational concepts such as point of view, voice, onomatopoeias and more!  Not only does this book lend itself to wonderful discussion, but it is adorable, fun and ends with a sweet message of friendship.  Read on for ideas, activities, and resources to create a full day of fun with the book My Big Dog by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel.

Kindergarten Activities for the book My Big Dog

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My Big Dog Reading Activities

My Big Dog is a sweet and silly story about a cat named Merl who’s purrrrfect life is turned upside down when his people bring home a puppy!  This story is told by Merl the cat, which makes for a great discussion on narration and point of view.  Begin the day by reading this book. You may want to visit Janet Stevens website and read a little about this wonderful author as a quick introduction to the book.

Teacher holding the book My Big Dog

Text Dependent Questions for My Big Dog

As you read, be sure to stop and ask text dependent questions such as:

  • How is Merl feeling?
  • Do you think Merl and the big dog will be friends?
  • Did Merl’s feelings change by the end of the book?
  • What would have happened if the people had brought home a cat instead of a dog?

For ideas on how to add text dependent questions and make your read aloud better, read our blog, 3 Steps to Create Meaningful Experiences Through Read Aloud, or purchase our My Big Dog Interactive Read Aloud resource.  Read on to learn more about this fantastic resource. 

Interactive Read Aloud for My Big Dog

Make your read aloud come alive with this 3 day My Big Dog Interactive Read Aloud resource!

This resource comes complete with:

  • 3 days of detailed lesson plans with book introductions, text dependent questions, vocabulary, and common core standards
  • 14 differentiated writing pages
  • Story elements anchor charts
  • Cute and fun crafts to decorate your classroom or send home to showcase student work

This resource aligns with the science of reading. It is research based, easy to implement and aligned with the common core standards.

Writing Activities for My Big Dog

After reading and discussing the book, have your students write about their favorite part.  Here are some other writing prompts you could use:  What was the problem and solution?  What is your opinion of the book and why?  What is the author’s message?  Remind students to use capital letters, end marks and spaces when appropriate.  Here are some FREE writing templates for you to use. 

Cute and Easy Dog and Cat Crafts

No Fun Friday would be complete without a cute craft.  Be sure to model how to make these cute pets.  We suggest you make these all together and step by step.

Step 1 and 2 of cat craft
cat craft step 5 and 6

To make an adorable dog, follow these same steps on yellow construction paper.  Be be sure to cut out the tail before the ears.  Then cut dog shaped ears out instead of cat ears and you will have a big dog to go with this cute cat.  Have your students take these fun crafts home and retell the story with their families.

yellow dog and tabby cat craft for kids

Math Activities for My Big Dog

Here are some fun and FREE math survey pages you can do with your kids.  With this activity, students will collect data, use their data to make a graph and then analyze the data by answering the questions.   

kindergarten math activity-Pet survey and graph

Snack Ideas for My Big Dog

Here are some cute and tasty snack ideas to complement the book My Big Dog by Janet Stevens and Susans Stevens Crummel.

Dog Bone and Fish Shaped Cheese Slices

For this cute snack, use dog bone and fish cookie cutters to cut out some cheese and/or salami slices.

dog bone and fish shaped cheese slices and crackers

Dog Bone Graham Crackers and Goldfish Crackers

These Scooby Snack bone shaped graham crackers and Goldfish crackers are an easy way to jazz up snack time.

dog bone graham crackers and goldfish crackers

My Big Dog Mapping Activity

Have your kids work together to make a map of all the places Merl visited.  Don’t forget to include the compass rose.


For this group activity you will need:

  • 1 full sheet of construction paper 12 X 18 in per group
  • 1 small piece of construction paper 6 x 4 ½ in per child (9 in x 12 in cut into fourths)
  • Crayons/markers
  • scissors
  • glue

Mapping Activity Instructions

Before beginning this project, model how to fold the small peices of construction paper before drawing on them.  This will allow the  pictures  to stand up on the map (see image above).  Divide your class into groups of 4 students.  Each group will work together to create a map of all the places Merl went when he ran away from home.  For example, one child in each group will draw a picture of Merl with the nice lady who accessorized and “ruined” him.  Another child will draw a picture of Merl at the house with the “Cat Wanted” sign.  Another child will draw a picture of the kids fighting over Merl.  The last child will draw a picture of Merl in the box.  If you have extra children, they could draw other pictures from the story, for example, a picture of the Big Dog carrying Merl home.  When students are finished drawing their pictures, they  glue them onto a large piece of construction paper.  They can draw arrows, footprints, a compass rose, labels, trees, etc.  Students then discuss where things are located using directional words (north, east, south, west).  Groups can also practice retelling the events in order.  Students can also do this mapping activity individually.

More Fun Friday Activities for Kindergarten

At 4 Kinder Teachers, our passion is instilling a love for reading.  What better way to do this than reading wonderful children’s books and using them to create a full day of fun!  Check out some of our other Fun Friday ideas such as Tops and Bottoms Activities for KindergartenDog Gone Good Activities for Harry the Dirty Dog, and Super Fun Activities for the Mixed Up Chameleon.

Let us know if you use any of these fun resources with your kids.  We love seeing pictures and hearing about how other classes enjoy these activities. 

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Hi, we're Jackie, LeighAnn and Jessica

We are a team of kindergarten teachers turned educational consultants.  We help teachers like you with:

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