Noodles Makes a Boo-boo, Online Activities Guide

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Story Written by:
Marcia Thornton Jones & Debbie Dadey

Activities Written by:
Reta Broadway & Terri Darr Mclean

Illustrated by:
Chris Ware

Cover Design & Titling by:
Pyrographic Media


Chapter 3 - Disaster

Beginning Activities

Just as all stories have characters, all characters have problems. These problems are known as conflict. There are five types of conflict:

Human vs. Human - A character has a problem with one or more of the other characters.

Human vs. Society - A character has a problem with society (e.g., school, laws).
Woman vs. herself - A character struggles with herself and her decisions.

Humans vs. Nature - A character is in conflict with some element of nature (e.g., bad weather).

Humans vs. Fate - A character is in battle against a problem that seems too big to control.

In chapter 3, there are definitely problems! What type of conflict is Noodles faced with? Danny? Boo-Boo?

  1. Now turn to your newspaper’s comics. Find comic strip characters that are faced with each of the five types of conflict. Bonus activity: Turn to the main news section of the newspaper and find real-life examples of conflict. Discuss your examples with the class.

  2. The point during which various problems, or conflicts, arise in a story is called the rising action. Rising action is important to a story because it creates suspense and makes the reader want to read more. The rising action is one of several elements that contribute to a story’s plot.

  3. Discuss the problems that arise as the plot thickens in "Noodles." Then, with a partner, look in your newspaper for interesting plots. For example, look for events that change a person’s life. Share one example with the class.




Dad tells Noodles and Danny, "This place is a mess!"


Real Science!

Science is all about making predictions and testing to see if your predictions are correct. When you conduct an experiment, for example, you change one thing (or variable) and then observe and record how that change affects another thing. You predict what you think will happen (In science, this is called making a hypothesis). Then you observe the results of your experiment to see if your prediction was correct.

  1. In "Noodles," Danny says Boo-Boo is dangerous. Do you predict Danny is right? Read on!


Challenging Activities

  1. At the beginning of this chapter, Danny is frustrated with Noodles and her invention. Identify words and phrases that let you know how he is feeling after Boo-Boo picks up all the toys and then dumps them in the floor.

  2. Why does Noodles put her hands over Boo-Boo’s belly button? How does Danny react when she does this?

  3. What is Dad’s rule about toys? Why does he think Danny is lying about who made the mess?

  4. How do you think Dad is feeling when he leaves Danny and Noodles to go to his basement workshop? How do the authors let you know what he is feeling?

  5. Danny wants Noodles to help pick up the toys but she doesn’t plan to help him. What reason does she give Danny for leaving him to clean up by himself? How would you feel if you were Danny?

  6. At the end of the chapter, Noodles is back in her lab working on the robot and the strange noises have started again. Imagine that you are building a robot. Make up several words to describe the noises you might be making.


For the Advanced Reader

  1. Why does Noodles blame Danny for Boo-Boo’s condition at the beginning of the chapter? Do you think Noodles really believes that Danny can hurt Boo-Boo’s feelings? Do you think Noodles really believes that Boo-Boo has feelings?

  2. Both Danny and Noodles are feeling some anger and frustration in this chapter. Use a Venn diagram or a T-chart to show the ways in which each of the twins shows frustration. Look for specific behaviors and words that show these feelings. Summarize the ways in which the twins are similar and different in this chapter.

  3. When Dad sees all the toys on the floor, he gives Danny a choice. What is this choice? What does Danny decide to do? Do you think it is hard for Danny to make his decision? Think of a time when you had to make a choice. Was it a difficult choice? Would you make the same decision again?




A pile of toys to clean up.


©2002, Knight Ridder Productions, Inc. All rights reserved.