Our book club this month involved a Kate DiCamillo novel, strawberry mice, some illegal soup, and a moat.
My youngest, who is 8, is in a book club based we created in our homeschool community. The books we chose are classic books that appeal to, not only new readers but readers of all ages. This month we chose a book with a French flair. Welcome to our Tale of Despereaux Book Club.
Welcome to Castle Dor
The children arrived at “Castle Dor” via a drawbridge. We decorated our front door with stone and wood paper. A- made paper chains from construction paper and my husband found a climbing wall from the swing set to use for the drawbridge. It was pretty cool, with the exception of the moment it all ripped down and I had to frantically tape it back up before the first guest arrived.
Inside, they were escorted to the main dining hall where they feasted on “mice and cheese.”
The mice were strawberries with almond sliver ears, black gel icing eyes and nose, and a chocolate icing tail. We cut the cheese into triangles and made holes using the end of a round icing tip.
The Tale of Despereaux Book Club Discussion
While the children snacked, we discussed the book. The Tale of Despereaux is a novel about a mouse, a rat, a servant girl, and a princess. A- loved it and insisted on reading all 52 chapters aloud. The other kids liked it a lot, too. Honestly, I thought a book that long with such rich vocabulary would turn some of the kids off. But, it didn’t. They enjoyed the different stories as they merged into the main storyline.
Tale of Despereaux Book Club Activities
An important part of the book is a story about the criminalization of soup – soup, soup spoons, soup bowls, soup crocks. All of it is illegal. So, I decided to teach the kids how to make soup. In this case, it was vegetable soup.
The kids learned peeling and chopping skills. They were super excited to get a chance to use their new knife skills on the potatoes and carrots. So much so, that they chopped a 10-pound bag of potatoes before I could stop them. We very nearly had potato soup.
While the soup simmered, the kids watched the movie The Tale of Despereaux. Though I was informed it wasn’t as good as the book, they were entertained. By this time the “pièce de résistance” was ready, and it was time to eat. Each child received a copy of the recipe to take home.
The kids loved cooking and were very proud of their new skills. Have you taught your children to cook? What’s their favorite meal?
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Hi, I’m Dachelle. I’m a homeschooling mom of 3 in the South. I love chocolate and have been known to hide it from my children. I can often be found reading a good book (or even sometimes just an okay book) and enjoying a jar of Nutella — don’t judge. I blog, here, at HideTheChocolate.com when I’m not creating book clubs and making lists…lots and lots of lists (it’s an addiction). Learn more…
This is amazing! Well done. I’m inspired!
Thanks, Vickie! I’m always inspired by your book clubs as well.
Impressed but not surprised! I heard it was a blast. You deserve some chocolate.
Wow! This is amazing! We haven’t read the Tale of Despereaux yet but it’s on our list this year.
Ana Willis says
Amazing, Dachelle!! We are starting our Kids Bookclub for the Quiver of Arrows and I can’t wait to see how it goes! We are on our second week of Brave Writer and my kids are loving it!! We chose to start with Charlotte’s Web because we just read it this year so it’s still fresh in my kids mind.
Thank you so much for linking with us at #BlessedMOMdays link up party!!
Thanks, Ana! We love using the Quiver and the Arrow.
Precious! Those little strawberry mice are so cute!! Keep on rockin’ these book parties-and sharing with us for inspiration:)
The mouse & cheese are too cute! I’m showing them to my 4 year old right away !
They are soooo easy! And the kids loved them.
Love your mouse food craft! I love some of Kate diCamillo’s books, but I made my kids stop listening to Flora and Ulysses. Flora was way too disrespectful, and her parents were way too dumb. I’ll have to check this one out. Thanks for sharing at the #LMMLinkup.