The Tale of Despereaux Resource Set

Lesson Plans • Resources • Activities


The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo

Beloved author Kate DiCamillo’s The Tale of Despereaux, being the story of a mouse, a princess, some soup, and a spool of thread, is the story of an unlikely hero. Born undersized and with exceptionally large ears, Despereaux is nevertheless destined to be heroic. He is honest and true, and through his experiences, young readers will learn the importance of storytelling. The text structure introduces the characters out of sequence, and readers will learn to construct meaning by piecing together the facts and events that bring the characters together. This is the perfect story for mini lessons focused on non-linear text structure.

Teach with The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo

This Book Club Super Pack includes a Common Core aligned lesson plan and set of resources designed to support small group reading instruction.

Get everything you need to run a successful Book Club using The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo

  • Interactive Lesson Plan for 6 Book Club Meetings Focusing on Linear vs. Nonlinear Plots
  • Chapter by Chapter Discussion Guide
  • Chapter by Chapter Vocabulary Guide
  • Book Club Calendar
  • Conversation Prompts
  • Expectations for Book Club Anchor Chart / Student Reference Sheet
  • Student Self-Evaluation Forms
  • Running Record Assessment Tool
  • Student Reading Response Guide
  • Comprehension Assessment Rubric
  • Common Core State Standard Assessment
CCSS Alignment
TEKS Alignment
  • CCSS Alignment: L.5.4a L.5.5 L.5.5c L.5.6 RF.5.3 RF.5.4 RL.5.10 RL.5.2 RL.5.3 RL.5.4 RL.5.5 RL.5.6 RL.5.7 SL.5.1a SL.5.1b SL.5.1c SL.5.1d SL.5.2 SL.5.3 SL.5.6 W.5.8 W.5.9
  • Vocabulary: L.5.4a L.5.5 L.5.6
  • Instructional Overview: 5.10B 5.10E  5.10F 5.13A 5.13C 5.13E 5.13H 5.1A 5.1C 5.1D 5.6A 5.6B 5.6C 5.6D 5.6E 5.6F 5.6G 5.6H 5.6I 5.7A 5.7B 5.7C 5.7D 5.7E 5.7F 5.7G 5.8C
  • Vocabulary: 5.3A 5.3B 5.7E 5.7F
  • Take a Closer Look at the
    The Tale of Despereaux Resource Set

    Instructional Overview

    The instructional overview includes instructional background for story structure, instructional objectives for each of the Book Club meetings, and a list of the materials and preparation necessary to The Tale of Despereaux Book Club.
    TEKS Alignment:

    5.10B 5.10E  5.10F 5.13A 5.13C 5.13E 5.13H 5.1A 5.1C 5.1D 5.6A 5.6B 5.6C 5.6D 5.6E 5.6F 5.6G 5.6H 5.6I 5.7A 5.7B 5.7C 5.7D 5.7E 5.7F 5.7G 5.8C

    Book Club Management Resources

    The management resources include a Book Club Calendar, conversation prompts, Student Self-Evaluation forms, Reading Response Board (with optional Common Core alignment), and an Expectations for Book Club anchor chart.

    Meeting #1: Set Expectations for Book Club and Introduce Timelines

    Using The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo, readers will explore story structure. When stories are written using a nonlinear timeline, the reader is able to find out the outcome before knowing what caused it.

    Meeting #2: Understanding Linear and Nonlinear Timelines

    This The Tale of Despereaux Book Club meeting focuses on identifying the characteristics of both linear and nonlinear timelines. Linear timelines have events happening in chronological order, while in nonlinear timelines, events happen out of order.

    Meeting #3: Understanding Flashbacks, Events, and Consequences

    Author Kate DiCamillo uses flashbacks in The Tale of Despereaux to help readers understand the relationship between events and their consequences. Students will track events and consequences while reading for a better understanding of the story.

    Meeting #4: Examining Nonlinear Timelines

    Another reason that author Kate DiCamillo uses flashbacks in The Tale of Despereaux is to build suspense for the reader. Students will discuss this and other reasons why the author may have chosen to write this story the way she did.

    Meeting #5: Understanding Flash Forwards

    The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo follows a nonlinear timeline. During this meeting students will explore the use of flash forwards as a way for the author to provide more information about characters and events.

    Meeting #6: (Coda) Recognizing the Author’s Voice

    This final The Tale of Despereaux Book Club meeting explores author Kate DiCamillo's use of her own voice throughout the story. The author speaks the the reader during the story to clarify timeframes and provide support of the book's theme.

    The Tale of Despereaux Focus Assessment and Rubric

    Use this six-question assessment to determine whether or not students understand the key concepts associated with linear vs. nonlinear story structure.

    The Tale of Despereaux Common Core Assessment

    This 9 question Common Core aligned assessment can be used to determine students' overall comprehension of The Tale of Despereaux and their mastery of the Common Core State Standards.

    The Tale of Despereaux Running Record

    Use this "done for you" Running Record to assess oral reading fluency of The Tale of Despereaux. Track meaning, structure, and visual accuracy using the first 100 words of the text to determine whether or not this book is a good fit for the readers in your classroom.

    Student Resources in Spanish

    This set of Spanish student facing resources includes Book Club Management Resources for use with The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo. These resources are intended to be used with the lesson plans included in the Resource Set for this book.

    The Tale of Despereaux Vocabulary Connections

    Before your students can fully comprehend and enjoy The Tale of Despereaux, it’s helpful to introduce words that might be new to readers. Either download The Tale of Despereaux Super Pack or this individual Vocabulary Builder for resources and activities that support Tier 2 and Tier 3 vocabulary growth through fun and productive interactions with new words.
    Common Core Alignment:

    L.5.4a L.5.5 L.5.6
    TEKS Alignment:

    5.3A 5.3B 5.7E 5.7F

    The Tale of Despereaux Common Core Alignment

    List of the Common Core State Standards addressed by The Tale of Despereaux Book Club Resource Set.

    TEKS Alignment

    Complete TEKS alignment for all of the mini lessons, resources, and activities in the The Tale of Despereaux Resource Set.

    Plan Faster and Discover New Ways to Use the Books in Your School and Classroom Libraries

    With a Premium Membership to BookPagez you get unlimited access to thousands of mini lessons for hundreds of books.

    Whether you want to focus on comprehension or word work, you'll find exactly what you need inside of our comprehensive Resource Library.

    Upgrade below and print everything you need to deliver balanced literacy instruction using popular and award-winning children's literature.

    BookPagez makes teaching with children's books easier than ever.

    With resources for more than 250 of your favorite children's books, you'll always have exactly what you need to deliver balanced literacy instruction - without all the planning and prep!

    Members get access to both print and digital resources, enjoy fast planning tools, and stay organized with custom files and access to Digital Classroom. All of the BookPagez resources are Common Core aligned and flexible enough to be used for whole group, small group, and one-on-one instruction.


    Try us in for 30 days.
    If you aren't completely satisfied we'll refund your subscription - no questions asked!

    Monthly Subscription

    $9 / month

    Sale: $4.50/mo *
    Billed Monthly

    Print and Digital Resources
    Cancel Anytime

    Other Resources You Might Like