Classroom Book Activity – Ira Sleeps Over

classroom book activity ira sleeps overOctober Book Activity: Ira Sleeps Over By Bernard Waber

Story Summary:

Ira is excited to spend the night at his friend Reggie’s house. It is his first sleep over. Ira isn’t sure if he should bring his teddy bear. He’s never slept without his teddy bear before. Will Reggie make fun of him if he brings his teddy bear to the sleepover?

Recommended Ages

  • Grades 1 – 2

Activity 1

  • Start with an interactive read aloud of Ira Sleeps Over with the whole class. Students will be focusing on making connections during the read aloud.
  • Stop on the following pages and ask the students questions to get them thinking about the story and their connections to the story:
    • Pg.9 – Ira sleeps with a teddy bear. Do you sleep with a stuffed animal at night? Do you know someone who does?
    • Pg.24 – Reggie has invited Ira to spend the night at his house. Have you ever been invited to go somewhere special? How did it go?
    • Pg.33 – Reggie and Ira are having fun together at the sleepover. Think about other books you have read where friends are playing together. Can you think of another book that reminds you of Reggie and Ira?


  • The book Ira Sleeps Over by Bernard Waber

Activity 2

  • Review with the class the definition of Author’s Purpose. Why did the author write this story? Write the following questions on chart paper and have students turn and talk to their neighbor about the questions. Bring the class together at the end to discuss their answers.
  1. Why do you think the author chose to have Ira’s parents give him different advice than his sister? (Pg. 13)
  2. Why do you think the author writes that Reggie ignored Ira’s questions? What does this tell us about Reggie? (pg. 20)
  3. What is the author trying to tell you about comfort items? Why do certain items comfort people? (pg. 36)
  4. Why do you think the author wrote this book? What experiences do you think he had that made him want to write about two friends having a sleepover? (pg. 48)


Activity 3

  • The next activity is to review some of the vocabulary from the book.
  • In a center, have students revisit the book Ira Sleeps Over and go for a word hunt for these words: dominos, magnify, teddy bear, flashlight, invited, egg timer, worried, ghost stories, and goggles.
  • The words can be written on a whiteboard at the center. Have students use highlight tape to show where the word is in the sentence.


Activity 4

  • Students will complete a reader response question to the book Ira Sleeps Over.
  • Reread the story one more time to the whole class or in a reading group.
  • Have students respond in writing to the following question: If a friend invited you to a sleepover what would you bring with you?
  • Students could respond to this question in a reader’s notebook or on lined paper and draw a picture to match their response.


Guest Blogger: Melinda Brown, Reading Recovery Teacher at East Lyme Public

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