Henry was late for class once too often. His teacher threatened him with lifelong detention unless Henry had a good and very believable excuse for being late. Henry launched into his tall-tale story.
Readers will have fun deciphering the “alien” words Henry uses.
A Decoder of Henry’s “alien” words is located in the back of the book.
This story promotes creativity, imagination, discovery and humor.
AUTHOR: Jon Scieszka
ILLUSTRATOR: Lane Smith
PUBLISHER: Viking, 2001
AGE GROUP: 5-8
CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, imagination, discovery, humor
1) Invent a new alien. Brainstorm a list of characteristics/attributes that you think an alien would possess such as antenna, number of arms or legs, eye shape, etc. Then for each attribute, how would you make your alien different from any other alien. Draw your new alien. Don’t forget to give your alien a name.
2) Create new words. Using a foreign language dictionary, look up “Z” words and another letter of the alphabet like “A.” Choose six words. How can you combine those words to create a new word? Invent new definitions for your words. Tell a story using your new language.
To learn more about author Jon Scieszka, visit:
To learn more about illustrator Lane Smith, visit: