Teaching suggestions for use with

Right Here on This Spot

written by Sharon Hart Addy illustrated by John Clapp


Discussion Topic Activity Individual or Group Research


How do archaeologists know where to dig? How do they know what to keep? Fill a box with old and new pencils erasers, and crayons. Ask for the oldest pencil, etc.  How was it identified?
What tools do archaeologists use?  Research in books like "Archaeologists Dig for Clues" by Kate Duke.

Ice Age

What is a glacier? What would it be like to live near a glacier? How did glaciers change the land? Sprinkle potting soil in a pan. Prop up one end of the pan. Place an ice cube at the high end. Explain that glaciers grow as more ice forms. Line up ice cubes behind the first one until it slides. What happens as it moves?
Which animals lived during the Ice Age? How were they protected from the cold? What is an Alpine meadow? Where do we find glaciers today?

Indians / Native Americans

Why were Native Americans called Indians? Decorate paper headbands. Write one fact about Native Americans on them. Find books with the Native American lore of your area. Hold a pretend campfire story-telling session.


What's the difference between snow and rain? Read Ezra Jack Keat's A Snowy Day. How would the story change if the snow was rain?
Read Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin and Mary Azarian.

U. S. Flag

What do the stars on the flag represent? Why are there thirteen stripes?
Design a flag using colors and shapes as symbols. What did the first flag look like? Why did it change? What did it look like in 1861?

Civil War

How did Civil War soldiers keep in touch with their families? Draw pictures or send verbal messages like soldiers who couldn't read or write.
How did people record events in the past? Find out about slates, quills, and pictographs.


Why do soldiers wear uniforms? What other groups wear them?
Make visors by cutting a hole in a sheet of construction paper. Use different colors to indicate groups. Assign a captain for each group. Play hide and seek. Captains must find their groups.
How were the uniforms of soldiers from the North and South the same and different? What equipment did soldiers in each army carry?


What did the people in the story do for a living?
Do a "Then and Now" chart with the answers to the discussion question. Are these activities careers or hobbies today? Why?
How has farming changed since pioneer days? Are blacksmiths and barrel makers still as important today as they were in the past?


Why did the farm in the story have cows, pigs, and chickens?
Visit a farm or invite a farmer to talk about raising animals. If the farm specializes, ask why.
What does the expression "Jack of All Trades" mean? How does it apply to farmers? Who else does it fit?

Land Use and Properties

Why does farmland look like a patchwork quilt from above? Why do people plant different things?
Fill two strainers, one with sand, the other with potting soil. Pour the same amount of water over both.   Catch and measure the amount that runs through. Plant grass or flower seeds in both. Do they grow as well in each medium?
What crops grow in your state?  What kind of soil do they need? Celebrate your state's agriculture with a party featuring foods grown in your state or area.

For additional suggestions see John's website: www.johnclapp.com

or e-mail Sharon at: righthereonthisspot@juno.com