Not A Box

Tips for "Not a Box"

As you read:

  • This book is wonderfully creative. Help reinforce the idea that things do not always have to be what they appear to be. If you are reading on a bed or a couch, say something like, "This is not a bed. This is a boat. And we're headed to ____, are you ready for the adventure?!"

Extending the story:

  • Turn any boxes (or paper towel rolls) around your home into something new. There are tons of ideas on Pinterest to inspire you (check out these:, but the fun here is that you don't even need additional art materials. Just your imagination! Join your child as you both dream up possibilities for what your box, or other household item might be.

Other Useful Tips

Before You Begin Reading, Preview the Story and Discuss

Take a moment to explore the cover and illustrations and give your child a chance to make observations and predictions before beginning the read-through. Throughout this guide, there are several questions and prompts that you can use as you read, so feel free to spread them out across multiple readings. Use prompts and questions like:

  • What is happening on the cover?

  • What do you think the story will be about based on the title and the cover?

  • {Flip to an illustration} What do you think is happening in this picture?


As You Read, Explore New Vocabulary

Whether you're reading the story or your child is reading it him/herself, take time to stop whenever s/he comes across a new word. Read the word slowly several times as you underline the word with your finger. Then, ask your child what s/he thinks the word might mean. Instruct him/her to use the words and illustrations surrounding it to try and glean the meaning. Work together to discover the word's meaning, and then try to integrate it into your daily conversation to help reinforce these new vocabulary words. 


After Reading, Make Connections

To ensure comprehension, ask your child about what happened in the book. Who were the main characters, and where were the primary settings? What happened and why did those things happen in the story? Ask your child the following questions to further explore his/her understanding of the book:

  • Did you like that story? What was your favorite part? Why?

  • What lesson do you think the main character(s) learned?

  • What does {vocabulary word} mean?

  • {Discuss alternatives to the storyline} What would have happened if...?

  • I wonder why...