In Baby Elephant Runs Away, Baby Elephant wanders off while chasing a butterfly. When he realizes he is alone, he becomes frightened. How does he get back to Mother Elephant?
Baby Elephant Runs Away is part of the illustrated Baby Elephant Stories set of books. The titles, Lunch for Baby Elephant, Baby Elephant’s Trunk, and Baby Elephant Goes for a Swim, can be read by Early Emergent readers (F&P levels A-C, Reading Recovery® levels 1-4). Baby Elephant Runs Away and Berries for Baby Elephant are appropriate for Emergent readers (F&P levels D-E, Reading Recovery® levels 5-8). The increasing levels of reading difficulty serve to challenge and encourage progressing readers. Upper Emergent readers will enjoy the final title in the set, Baby Elephant is Thirsty (F&P level H, Reading Recovery® level 12).
Level D Readers
Baby Elephant Runs Away is an illustrated D leveled reader, based on independent evaluation by Fountas & Pinnell using the F&P Text Level Gradient™. The title is appropriate for Emergent readers (Levels D-E). Level D fiction titles typically feature stories about simple one-dimensional human characters or animal fantasy where the animal characters have human experiences, exhibit emotions, talk, and have the ability to reason. The printed text in Level D readers continues to be strongly supported by illustrations. While the vocabulary and themes are familiar to the reader, at this level they can be examined in more depth. Additionally, Emergent readers no longer rely as heavily on repetitive language patterns.
For students reading at Level D, voice‐print matching is smooth and automatic. They no longer track text with their fingers. They’re able to read pages with up to six lines of text and increased sentence complexity. The text can include prepositional phrases, adjectives, simple contractions, and possessive words (using apostrophes). Some of the sentences on a page can be longer (containing more than six words) and carry over to a second line of text. Level D readers are able to consistently self-monitor, and cross‐check other sources of information to self‐correct while they are reading.
The guided reading Emergent reader category includes Levels D-E. Emergent readers have a good understanding of the alphabet and early phonics that help them decode unknown words. They are developing comprehension skills and word-attack strategies, and are comfortable with a significant number of high-frequency words. Emergent readers are more flexible in their ability to handle varied placement of text on a page and understand most punctuation. They’re also able to recognize that reading has a variety of purposes and reading different kinds of books is enjoyable for distinct reasons. Readers at the Emergent level are able to understand a wider range of punctuation and can read dialogue, reflecting the meaning through their phrasing. They’re also able to recognize and understand inflectional endings, like s and ing, and the effect those endings have on root words.
Readers at this level benefit from reading both fiction and nonfiction/informational books. Reading nonfiction helps young students develop background knowledge, which increases their comprehension ability by enabling them to make sense of new ideas. Additionally, informational texts have the potential to motivate students to read more by tapping into their personal interests. MaryRuth Books offers many fiction and nonfiction/informational leveled readers, suggested and used by Reading Recovery® and Guided Reading educators, when teaching Emergent readers.