Although "Goodnight Moon" is her best known work (it has sold four million copies since 1947), children's author Margaret Wise Brown (1910 - 1952) wrote more than a hundred children's before dying suddenly at forty two, while recovering from surgery. Her special magic was using simple language to tell a story from a child's point of view.
Celebrating 100 years of Margaret Wise Brown, this HarperCollins sites features some of her bestselling books with printable bedtime activities, coloring games, a printable counting activity, and an audio snippet from "The Runaway Bunny". There is also a short Brown bio and a longer one of illustrator Clement Hurd. "The son of a prosperous New York mortgage banker, Hurd attended St. Paul's and Yale, and seemed destined to join his father's firm when, in the spring of 1931, he announced his plan to become an artist and sailed for France."
Hubbard's Cupboard, a site for parents and teachers of preschoolers and kindergarten students, presents a five-day plan for teaching and enjoying "Goodnight Moon" with a group of youngsters. "Day One: Ask students to share with the class things that they do to get ready for bed (brush teeth, get a drink of water, put on pajamas, hug a family member, find their favorite stuffed animal, say goodnight, etc.)" The lesson plan includes a list of related poems, a few craft projects, and cross-curricular ideas such as studying nocturnal animals in science.
Amy Gary, a publishing industry veteran, has found over 300 unpublished works by Margaret Wise Brown since 1990, which she is editing and bringing to market. Her site is an excellent biographical source, as it contains both a short and long bio, a photo gallery, and links to additional online articles about Brown. "Margaret loved animals. Most of her books have animals as characters in the story. She liked to write books that had a rhythm to them, so many of her books rhyme or repeat a word pattern."
This PDF is free sample from a larger curriculum that is for sale at the Mother Goose Programs site. The four-page Good Night Moon lesson plan includes bios of Brown and Hurd, and lots of suggested topics of discussion, such as using the book to talk about things that happen at night. "Look for the moon through the window every night. Talk about its size and shape and where it is in the sky. Make a night picture, using blue or black construction paper. Whenever you can, refer to a line or an idea from the a book your child likes."
Created as a study guide for a puppet performance, this eleven-page printable activity packet will work great in a classroom, even without the original puppet show. It includes Meet the Creators (introductions to Brown and Hurd), Bunny Basics ("In addition to their prominent ears, which can measure more than four inches long, rabbits have long, powerful hind legs, and a short tail."), rhyming activities, and a Goodnight Moon coloring page.