Battle Bunny

Written by:Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett

Illustrated by:Matthew Myers

Before Reading

Preview and Predict

Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett somehow create a world in Battle Bunny where the main character is simultaneously sad about his friends not remembering his birthday and vengeful, with an evil plan to conquer all of his enemies. Talk to your child about the cover illustration, and ask about the clues that s/he notices that may give some relevant information about what the story is about. Ask questions like:

What do you notice on the front cover? 

What do you think a story entitled "Birthday Bunny" would be about? What about "Battle Bunny"? Why do you think part of the word "Birthday" is scratched out?

What do you think will happen in this story?

What did you do for your last birthday? Who helped you celebrate? Was it fun?


KWL Chart

Help your child compile these thoughts and more into a K-W-L chart, with notes on what your child knows about the story, what s/he wants to know, and what s/he has learned at the end of the story.

As You Read

Build Language

If your child is able to read, allow him/her to read the story or alternate reading each page. As you help your child break down words into letters and sounds, s/he will be better equipped to read more words and understand how they are formed. Examples of new words in Battle Bunny include:



Monitor Comprehension

Your child may be confused if you try to follow both story lines at the same time (the original version and the "revised" version), so ask your child which one s/he would like to read first! Does s/he want to read about Birthday Bunny or Battle Bunny? S/he will get very different stories from reading each one on its own, and you can switch when you read the story again.

After Reading

Make Connections

Help your child look at the story as a whole once you've completed your read-through by asking/discussing questions like: 

Did you like Birthday/Battle Bunny? Did you have a favorite part? Why was that your favorite?

What happened in Battle/Birthday Bunny? 

How did Birthday Bunny's friends surprise him? How was Battle Bunny defeated?

Why do you think the authors wrote the story this way?

(After you've read both versions) Which version did you like best? Why?

Extending the Story

Create Your Double Story

Supplies:pen, pencil, paper, and coloring materials


To create your own double story, just like Battle Bunny by following these simple steps:

  1. Brainstorm a story idea! It can be about a bunny, an astronaut, or your family. Anything is fair game, so let your child's imagination run wild.
  2. Once you've got an idea, work together to write down the story. It doesn't have to be a full story, it can just be the beginning of the story if you'd like. 
  3. Then, create a depiction of that story in one image. Draw and color it until you're satisfied.
  4. Now, go back to your written story and make some changes! If your main character is a fighting monkey, maybe you could cross out "fighting" and put "dancing". Continue to make changes that follow that second story line (in this case, a dancing monkey) until you've got another version of the story.
  5. Lastly, return to your picture and start making some changes in pencil over your original drawing. You can draw a tutu on your monkey, and sketch in a stage and some lights overhead.

Whatever your story may be, get creative and have fun!