Blueberries for Sal {Book Activities}

Blueberries for Sal {Book Activities}
Blueberries for Sal {Book Activities}

Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey is one of those time-honored classics that finds its way onto many homeschool book lists.  And who doesn’t like Robert McCloskey?

Winner of the 1949 Caldecott honor, Blueberries for Sal follows a little girl and her mother up a big hill in search for blueberries.  But little Sal and her mother are not the only ones enjoying blueberries that day!


(We are suggesting a variety of activities that can be enjoyed from the smallest to your older student.  As always, pick and choose what suits your family!)

  • When little Sal drops her first three berries into her pail, they make a noise: kuplink, kuplank, kuplunk.  Younger readers might enjoy having their own tin pail to drop three objects into and describe the noise they make.
  • Kuplink, kuplank, kuplunk are examples of onomatopoeia — words that imitate the sound they stand for (like moo, buzz, and baa).  Make a list of several other onomatopoeia words.
  • How many were eating berries on the hill that day?  (Don’t forget the crows and partridges!)
  • What season do you think it is?  What hints are you given as to what season it might be?
  • Compare and contrast Sal and little bear.  What do they have in common?  How are they and their actions different?
  • Learn more about blueberries (see helps below).
  • Make blueberry jam (easy recipe link in activities below).
  • Narrate the story.
  • Create an author’s page in your literature notebook for Robert McCloskey.
  • Add Blueberries for Sal to your Caldecott winners notebook.
  • Illustrate your favorite scene from the book.

Additional Resources

Robert McCloskey Biography
Very interesting biography, especially for young people, from Greater Dayton Public Television.

6 Ways to Get the Most from Literature-Based Studies

6 Ways to Get the Most From Literature-Based Studies
Other ideas for interacting with the story.

Maine Wild Blueberries
More about the fruit from the University of Maine Extension Center.


Blueberries for Sal
Before- and after-viewing activity suggestions from New Hampshire Public Television.

Robert McCloskey Exhibition
View more of his illustrations.

Activity: Compare & Contrast

Activity: Compare & Contrast
Resources for comparing little Sal and little bear.

Blueberry Jam
Simple recipe from Taste of Home that will work perfectly for youngsters!  No canning necessary.

Blueberries for Sal {Book Activities}

Blueberries for Sal by  Robert McCloskey
The book for those interested.

Make Way for Ducklings {Free Video & Activities}

Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey
Another favorite by the author. You can read our review and activities for this title, as well.

A Time of Wonder {Book Activities}

A Time of Wonder by Robert McCloskey
And one more favorite! Read our full review with suggested activities.

Unit Studies & Lesson Plans
Fruits & Veggies: A Unit Study

Fruits & Veggies: A Unit Study
Learn more about fruits.

Blueberries for Sal

Blueberry Sal
For those using the book in a more formal setting, you may enjoy this complete literary unit from Hand of a Child.  Not a free resource, but highly rated lapbook/unit that covers blueberries, bears, and Maine in a hands-on way aimed at younger students.  Over 100 pages including a research guide and 29 activities.

Maine: A Unit Study

Maine: A Unit Study
Robert McCloskey wrote often about Maine.  Learn more!

Printables & Notebooking Pages
10 Ways to Use Notebooking: #3 Literature

10 Ways to Use Notebooking: #3 Literature
Notebooking ideas.

Author Notebooking Pages
Simple pages that include room for copywork, narrations, an illustration and dates of birth/death of the author, and books by the author.

Drawing & Writing Notebooking Paper {Free Download}
For narrations, copywork, and illustrating and describing your favorite scene from the book.