The Cow That Went OINK


Written By: Bernard Most


Before Reading

Explore Illustrations

Look over the cover and illustrations throughout the story with your child. Ask these questions:

What do you see on the cover?

What sound does a cow make? What about a pig?

{Flip to the picture with the crying pig} What do you see in this picture? Why do you think the pig is sad?

For older children, ask about what they predict will happen in the story by asking, “What do you think this story is about? Why do you think the cow says ‘oink’ instead of  ‘moo’.”


As You Read

There are many fun animal sounds in this story so have fun and incorporate them into your storytelling by imitating the animals’ laughter as you read. For example, when all of the farm animals laugh at the cow oinking, say, “the frog’s laugh sounds like ‘gribet-ha’ and the horse goes ‘hee-haw-ha’” and let your child join in by letting him/her make the sounds as well. You can say, “When I point to you, pretend to be the pig and say ‘mooooooo’”  This makes the story more interactive and keeps your child engaged and entertained throughout the whole story!

Making Connections:

To make the story more relate-able for your child, ask if a part of the story reminds him/her about an experience that they have had in the past. For example, when  the cow teaches the pig how to oink, ask “Can you think of a time when you learned something new? What did you learn? Was it hard? Do you think it is hard for the pig to learn how to ‘oink’? Why or why not?”For slightly younger children, recall a time when you taught him/her how to do something and ask questions about it. Ask, “Do you remember when I taught you how to _________? Was it hard to learn? Did you have fun?”


After Reading

Summarize and Interpret:

Ask these questions to allow your child to process what you have just read together:

Did you like the story?

What was your favorite part?

Why did the farm animals laugh at the cow and the pig?

How did the cow and the pig try to change?

Teasing is the main theme in the story so touch upon it by asking, “Was it very nice that the animals were laughing at the cow and the pig? Why?”


Activity: Cardboard Cow Craft

Adapted from Crafts by Amanda

Supplies: Cardboard tube, paint (pink, black and white), paintbrush,  white pipecleaner, scissors, craft glue, black sharpie marker

Tip: Be sure to cover up your workspace because things could get messy!

  1. Cut the cardboard tube to 3” wide. Paint the inside and outside of the tube with white paint and let it dry. Then paint a pink oval on the front for the nose.
  2. Add black splotches for the cow’s spots all around the tube, leaving room for the eyes above the nose. Also add black nostrils.
  3. Cut 2 ½” off of each white pipecleaner and use these pieces for the ears. Coil one end and leave a bit of it straight. Place the straight piece inside the tube and glue them in the top of the tube.
  4. Cut the remaining longer pieces in half so that you have 4 pieces. Coil those around the handle of a small paintbrush and glue them inside the bottom of the tube for the legs.
  5. Use a Sharpie to add eyes, eyebrows and a smile.
  6. For added fun, try creating the rest of the barnyard animals to recreate the story with your little one at home!
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