Heart of a Tiger: Activities for Educators, Students, and Parents

tigerHEART OF A TIGER provides a base for discovery of self through writing and discussion:

Choose the name that's in your heart or What's Your Dream?

Little Four's journey portrays the classic road to reaching a goal. First he has a dream, then he finds a mentor to learn from, and finally, he does what is perhaps the hardest step of all, he takes action. He does not give up when others laugh at him. He does not give up during his trials. Older students can write about or discuss their dreams, who their mentors are, and what steps they will take to reach their dreams.

If you could name yourself:

Have students write an essay based on this question: "If you could name yourself, what name would you choose and why?" After the students write their essays, form small groups where they can share their writings and thoughts.

What Will Your Name Be?

Younger children enjoy choosing a name for themselves and perhaps drawing a picture of themselves as that animal or doing that activity. Ask them, "What Will Your Name Be"? Some examples of names that have been chosen by students are: "Rhyming Singer", "Racing Cheetah", "Ballerina Girl", "Basketball Champion", "Silly Monkey".

Names and Heritage

Heart of a Tiger provides an opportunity to discuss not only what name you would choose for yourself, but also to explore the name you have. Respect for everyone's names and origins is an important part of this exploration.

Parents can be asked about the origin of the family surname and if there is any special meaning attached to it. This can be expanded to writing about the country of the student's ancestors as well as exploration/study of the country's culture, flora, and fauna.

Nicknames Discussion

  1. Does someone in your family have a nickname?
 
  2. Do you have a nickname?
 
  3. Why were you given the nickname?
 
  4. Do you like your nickname?
 
  5. Would you choose the nickname for yourself or would you choose a different name?

Creative Writing/ClassDiscussion: What you believe and who you become.

Four believed in his heart that he was more than others saw. He believed he could be as magnificent and courageous as the Beautiful Bengal Tiger.

Discussion Questions:

  1. If you believe you are a certain way, will that make you that way? 
  2. If you believe you are brave, will that make you brave? 
  3. If you believe you are stupid, will you act stupid?
 
  4. How much does your belief in something help it to become true?

Study of India

Heart of a Tiger can be a jumping off point to a study of India.Find India on a map.

Discussion Questions: 
What are the climate, geography, cities, and culture like? What animals live in India today?

Many languages, many sounds – one rhythm:

Children love rhythm, repetition, and rhyme, and, if we allow them, they love the magic of other languages. Whenever we can bring other languages and other cultures into the classroom, we have given a gift to our children.

When you come to the end of Heart of a Tiger and read the kittens' names in English and Hindi, children will be mesmerized by the magic of it. (A pronunciation guide for the Hindi names is in the front of the book.)

How much do you know about tigers?

In Heart of a Tiger, you can read about one courageous tiger. Decide whether these statements are fact or fiction!

  1. Tigers hunt by running after their prey.
  2. Tigers dislike water and travel miles to avoid it.
  3. Tigers like to eat grass.
  4. The tiger's forehead often has black marks which look like the Chinese characters for king.
  5. The word for a group of tigers is a herd.

Answers to Tigers: Fact or Fiction

  1. Tigers hunt by running after their prey. 
(Fiction. Tigers hunt by stalking or sneaking up on their prey. Also, tigers hunt alone. Hunting in a pack, as cheetahs do, would be hard in thick forests and grasslands where tigers live.)
  2. Tigers dislike water and travel miles to avoid it. 
(Fiction. Tigers like to take cool baths in ponds and rivers. They are very good swimmers.)
  3. Tigers like to eat grass. 
(Fact. Tigers are carnivores, but like domestic house cats, tigers also eat grass, presumably for its digestive and medicinal benefits.)
  4. The tiger's forehead often has black marks which look like the Chinese word (mark) for king. 
(Fact: 王)
  5. The word for a group of tigers is a herd. 
(Fiction. The word for a group of tigers is a streak.)

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