In this new series, we will use classic children’s tales to introduce problems and have students come up with solutions. For example, in this activity, we using the Town Mouse and the Country Mouse. The goals of the activity are to help students understand how buyers and sellers interact, and to create persuasive, descriptive text to advertise vacation rentals. We have included images of shelters and of sellers (Town Mouse and Country Mouse) and buyers (other anthropomorphic animals).

After reading the original fable, leave out the moral and have students predict an alternative ending, where Town and Country Mouse go into business together.

Tell students that the Town Mouse and Country Mouse understood each others’ differences. Over the years, they have visited each other and decided to go into business together. They now own Town Homes and Country Vacation Rentals.

Read the email message from Town Mouse and Country Mouse.

Dear Students,

We are Town Mouse and the Country Mouse and are the proud owners of Town and Country Vacation Rentals. As you might guess, Town rents homes in the towns and cities and Country rents homes that are located in the country or in the woods. Lately, we have become very busy and are looking for some good writers to help create advertisements for the rentals.

Please take a look at the places we have to rent. Choose a place and write a description that lists at least three positive aspects that might persuade someone to stay in the rental. Town’s clients love to stay in the city, close to activities, shops, and restaurants. Country’s clients prefer to relax in the country, woods, or on beaches.

We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Town Mouse and Country Mouse
Town and Country Homes
52 Friendship Lane
Cheeseville, USA


Teacher Notes:

In this activity, students can illustrate their understanding of descriptive writing. Often, students require an image to help them with this task. By immersing them in a “real world” experience, the students can become engaged in creating visual or video advertisements. In addition, they can use the cut-out images of the animals and the homes to illustrate how the buyers and sellers would interact, using:

  • Presentation software like PowerPoint or Keynote: Drag the images into the presentation software and use the speech or thought bubbles to create a comic.
  • Digital storytelling apps, like Puppet Pals, where you can place the image of the home, buyer, and seller. Then, you can have students animate them to illustrate their conversations.

We hope you live happily ever until next time we post . . . .

Dr. Deborah Kozdras has worked with students from K-20 and now provides professional development and creates curriculum for K-12 educators at the University of South Florida Stavros Center.

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