A Mongoose Tale is a beautifully illustrated and written story. It recounts the narrators personal memory of a natural phenomenon. The mongooses of Nakelo have ragged tails, whereas other mongooses have soft and furry tails. The narrator explains to the readerhow he worked out why the mongooses of Nakelo were different just by observing them in the wild.
The features of this book are:
- The word play in the title, which is based on the different meanings of tale and tail.
- Contrast expressed through adjectives: “thick and furry” compared with “ragged”.
- Contrast expressed through verbs and adverbs: “sat very still and waited” compared with “rushed forwards”.
- Simile (describing something by comparing it with something else): The mongoose was using its tail like a fishing line.
- The themes this book covers are: Animals and Birds and Insects
A Mongoose Tale can be used to introduce and reinforce the following skills:
- Forming Opinions
- Making judgements
- Using text as a model for the students own writing
- Vocabulary and word study
- Reading this story will help students to become aware that there are reasons for the observable features of living things – in this case the raggedness of a mongoose's tail.
- The recommended reading level for this book is: 16
Guided Reading Level16
Theme/TopicAnimals | Birds and Insects
Strategy/SkillsForming opinions | Making Judgments | Using texts as models for own writing | Vocabulary and word study