Developed by:Debbie Fong
B.B. Wolf brings new light to the story of Red Riding Hood. We love this fractured fairytale app for its beautiful artwork and gentle humor.
Prepare to use the app by introducing one of these activities.
- Little Red Riding Hood.Read a “traditional” version or two of this favorite folktale, such as this edition by Trina Schart Hyman. Refreshing your child’s memory of the tale will make B.B. Wolf that much funnier for them when they reach the plot twist and surprise ending.
- Title Talk.What does your child think the “B.B.” in B.B. Wolf stands for? Visit your local library and pull together a variety of Little Red Riding Hood stories. Does the name of this story app stand out from the other titles in any way? Can your child make any predictions about the story based on the title alone?
Help your child get the most out of an app experience by trying the following activities.
- Anticipate.In this app, small grey circles frequent the story. These circles are intended for the reader to touch and then an illustration or text appears. When you and your child are using the app, encourage them to guess what tapping each circle will reveal. This activity promotes literacy by engaging children in thinking deeply about the text and what moments in the story the author wants to emphasize or bring to life.
- Compare.As you reach the end of B.B. Wolf, ask your child the following questions: What did the wolf do in this story that is different than in other versions of Little Red Riding Hood? What lesson does Red Riding Hood learn at the end of the B.B. Wolf? How is this moral similar to or different from the lesson she usually learns in the story?
- The end…or the beginning?Tell your child to look carefully at the final “page” that reads “The End.” There are three small piles below the words “The End.” What are they piles of? They look an awful lot like straw, sticks, and bricks. Can your child think of a fairytale that has those three materials in it? How about the Three Little Pigs? Ask your child to think about why the author might have drawn those pictures at the end of B.B. Wolf. What message is she trying to give the app readers? Is the wolf in Three Little Pigs also B.B. Wolf, and if so does he act differently than in traditional versions of the story?
Extend the app experience with these real life activities.
- Theatrics.Fairytales make for wonderful theater, especially since so many are rooted in oral storytelling traditions. Help your child set up a small stage to act out B.B. Wolf with other family members or friends, or to try a one-man show! Choosing one simple costume piece for each character (red hooded sweatshirt for Red Riding Hood, a tail for B.B. Wolf, a dress for Grandma, etc.) can help bring that character to life for the actor, and a couple of set pieces (a basket that Red Riding Hood leaves behind and a chair or two in Grandma’s house) can create the entryway into a whole other world.
- Pen Pals.Invite your child to imagine the continuation of Red Riding Hood’s, Grandma’s, and B.B. Wolf’s new friendship. B.B. Wolf has other adventures, of course, and Red Riding Hood and Grandma must go on with their lives, but they all stay in touch and write letters. Have your child choose the role of one of the characters, let us say B.B. Wolf. You, yourself, should select one (or both) of the remaining two characters, so in this case Red Riding Hood and/or Grandma. Write a letter to the wolf (your child) and ask them to respond. Now it is your child’s turn to write back and fill you in on all their goings and doings. This activity is one that could be done in an afternoon, or spread out over weeks and months. Perhaps the letters arrive in a special mailbox. Perhaps the wolf has friends from other fairytales. In any case, have fun imagining and storytelling!
- Get Crafty.Debbie Fong’s artwork in B.B. Wolf uses a limited color palette: the black, white and gray of the pen drawings, the tan background, and the red of the riding hood. Help your child explore this medium. Provide them with white paper, preferably thicker like cardstock so it does not curl when wet, pen, and watercolors. Have them first draw a picture just using the pen. Then have them choose two or three colors from the watercolors to add splashes of colors to their design. Let dry, and admire the work of your little artist!