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The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes

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Similar to a celebrity, Beatrice is greeted by fans as she leaves her home to head to school - indeed people don't even know her name - because they instead know her famously as 'the girl who never makes any mistakes'. Ever. The reader might be persuaded into thinking such a life would be joyful, but Mark Pett shows us inside Beatrice's head and heart, revealing her self-destructive fears of making a mistake and the potential consequences it would bring upon her reputation. Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein developed the perfect book to teach students that making mistakes is okay. List making is a great strategy to get reluctant writers engaged. Have students generate lists relating to the text. The kid's take: When my 7-year-old son...finished, he sat with a thoughtful look on his face for a moment -- then reopened the book to read it through again. If that's not a recommendation, I don't know what is." - The Oregonian Parenting Blog

No matter how often students hear mistakes are okay, it is hard for them to believe it. This is because so many students either feel the need to be perfectionists or endure a lot of pressure to be great. Therefore, they need time to understand that mistakes are part of learning. Hopefully, they will realize that making mistakes is okay with The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes!

FREE Interactive Read Aloud

The artwork didn't impress me in the beginning, but it kind of grew on me as the story went on. At least the poor hamster was drawn wearing a helmet (if you're going to juggle the poor thing, the least you can do is give him some protection).

The book's message is unmistakable (so to speak), paired with a subtler reminder of how easy it is to have one's confidence shaken." - Publiishers Weekly

But in the end, readers (and perfectionists) will realize that life is more fun when you enjoy everything--even the mistakes. The audience is speechless, but Beatrice cannot stop laughing! Thankfully, this helps the audience laugh as well. Readers learn that it is much better to try something new than do the same things repeatedly. Read Aloud Activities The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes will help teach your students to use a growth mindset and positive self-talk. It is a great book to use to incorporate social emotional learning into your classroom. However, it is also a great mentor text for reading and writing. Take a look and see how you can use this book in your own classroom! She remembered to feed her hamster, Humbert, his favorite food, broccoli. And when she made a sandwich for her brother Carl’s lunch, she used exactly the same amount of peanut butter as jelly.

Lost Aesop: There seems to be An Aesop in there somewhere, but it's hard to find. It could be that Mistakes Are Not the End of the World, but if Beatrice truly had never made mistakes in her life, then wouldn't suddenly making a mistake be reason to be concerned? (for an analogy, imagine if Alice spoke perfectly her whole life but then suddenly got a Speech Impediment for no apparent reason, only for Bob to tell her, "It's OK, Alice- lots of people have speech impediments!"). The Aesop could also be not to pressure kids not to make mistakes but, again, if Beatrice had truly never made a mistake in her life, people would have reason to be impressed. This girl is simply known as the Girl who never makes mistakes. She juggles for people to watch. She is also famous for never making mistakes. One day, she makes a mistake on stage in her show for everyone to see. It’s a little mistake that causes a big embarrassing outcome. The girl doesn’t know what to do. Then, she begins to laugh. It is wonderful, that laughter. I have found that is how I handle my mistakes now too. I laugh at myself. It is the best way I have found to deal with my feelings, much better than ripping myself to shreds over a mistake. After the mistake, she gets to be much happier. There are things that I should have found objectionable: the eggs and the hamster’s part in the act are examples. The crowd sat stunned. They couldn’t believe that the Girl Who Never Makes Mistakes made a mistake! In the future I’ll definitely incorporate these into my SEL lessons. I also think that it fits perfectly into the growth mindset revolution! Some questions that could potentially go with this lesson could be:You do have to suspend disbelief a little bit, as some parts of the story are a little unbelievable. She's a celebrity because she's never made a mistake. Her hamster is a little too sentient. But beyond that, it's a story with a good message about taking risks (like her brother, Carl, or her friends Millie and Sarah, who seem to be having much more fun than perfectionistic Beatrice). Most people in town didn’t even know Beatrice’s name. They just called her because for as long as she never did. “the Girl Who Never anyone could remember, Makes Mistakes,” Teachers have to handle so much. Thankfully, the Read Aloud Activities are all no prep! Teachers just need to print the resources.

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