Peace at Last by Jill Murphy

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Ask the child questions after the second and third readings of Peace at Last, to start a conversation about the book. You can prompt the child on every page, using the questions below. If the child says something spontaneously about a picture, expand on it and ask the child to repeat it. There are questions for every one or two pages of the story.

  1. Is it daytime or nighttime at the bear's house? (It is nighttime.)
  2. What is sitting on the fence outside the house? (A gray cat is sitting outside the house on a fence.)
  3. Where is everybody going?
  4. (All the bears are going upstairs because it's time for bed.)
  5. What is Mrs. Bear doing? (She is yawning because she is tired.)
  6. Who falls asleep first? (Mrs. Bear falls sleep, but Mr. Bear doesn't.)
  7. What is happening in this picture? (Mr. Bear is putting on his robe because he is going to try to sleep in Baby Bear's room.)
  8. Can you make a noise like someone snoring?
  9. Baby Bear is not asleep. What is he doing? (He is pretending to be an airplane.)
  10. What kind of noise is Baby Bear making? (He is making a noise like an airplane.) What would that sound like?
  11. What is Mr. Bear doing now? (He is in the living room with a pillow on his head.)
  12. What is making noise in the living room? (The cuckoo clock is ticking.)
  13. What's happening now? (Mr. Bear is in the kitchen trying to find a quiet place to sleep.)
  14. What is making noise in the kitchen? (The refrigerator is humming and the faucet is dripping.)
  15. Where is Mr. Bear now? (He is in the garden.)
  16. Can Mr. Bear sleep in the garden? (No.) Let's point to the animals that are making noise. (The cats, the owl, and the hedgehog are all making noise and keeping Mr. Bear awake.)
  17. What is happening in this picture? (Mr. Bear is trying to sleep in the car.)
  18. What keeps Mr. Bear from sleeping? (The sun comes up and the birds say, "Tweet, tweet.")
  19. What is happening in this picture? (Mr. Bear is back in his own bed, sleeping peacefully.)
  20. What happens next? (Mrs. Bear wakes up and says, "Good morning, dear.")
  21. What do Mrs. Bear and Baby Bear bring Mr. Bear? (They bring him a cup of tea and the mail.)
  22. How do you think Mr. Bear will feel today? (He will feel tired because he didn't sleep very well last night.)


The words listed below come from the story and its pictures. As you page through the book, point to the pictures and ask the child to name the object or the action shown. This will help the child learn new words. You can use the words below, or you can choose words you think will interest your child. Below are words for every one or two pages of the story.

  • house, cat, moon, stars, owl
  • yawning, teddy bear, lamp
  • window, bats, asleep, awake
  • snoring, robe, striped pajamas
  • bedroom, airplanes
  • living room, chair, pillow, cuckoo clock
  • kitchen, refrigerator, faucet
  • garden, cats, owl, hedgehog
  • car, birds, sun rising
  • sleeping
  • waking up, alarm clock, morning
  • tea, letter, tired

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Excerpted from Read Together, Talk Together, the Pearson Early Childhood research-based program that makes reading aloud even more effective!


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