Rufus Finds a Home Book Review and Free Resource

Rufus Finds a Home Book Review and Free Resource

Rufus-Finds-a-Home-by-T-CohenRufus Finds a Home by Theodore Jerome Cohen teaches children about empathy and the difficulty of sometimes having to give up something we love. I bought the book myself and the links are non-affiliate.  I recently posted about another of Ted’s books, Pepe Builds a Nest and also his Fuzzy Wuzzy behavior story.

Ted said, “Empathy is a difficult subject, to be sure. Sadly, I think it’s missing from large sections of our society today as people seem more concerned about themselves ( as in selfies) than those around them, and what’s happening to them.”

Rufus Finds a Home

This book tackles a tough problem many families and dogs might and do face — the dog needs a new home and family. This does happen in real life as I am sure you are aware. In the story about Rufus, the older man begins to face the fact he can no longer appropriately care for his dog. He forgets to feed it, and forgets it is outside in the cold. Realizing the dog needs a new family and that he requires fewer responsibilities, he makes some decisions. He meets a family that does fall in love with the dog and takes it home.
Rufus Finds a Home by Theodore Jerome Cohen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book tackles a tough problem many families and dogs might and do face — the dog needs a new home and family. This does happen in real life. My friend just adopted a dog as the owner passed away right after her dog also did so. Children can learn about these situations and have some understanding for people and dogs in this situation.

In Rufus, the older man begins to face the fact he can no longer appropriately care for his dog. He forgets to feed it, and forgets it is outside (and in the cold). Realizing the dog needs a new family and that he requires fewer responsibilities, he makes some decisions. He meets a family that does fall in love with the dog and takes it home.

It is a sad story line but carefully composed in rhyme and very young children might not fully understand the situation. They know dogs get adopted which is a happy thought in their minds. Primary age children will probably “get the drift” but be able to understand without becoming upset. It is sad for all of us when older relatives face such difficulties. This book can be helpful to families in several life situations.

Rufus has won first place in the Royal Dragonfly Awards in the Aging and Senior Living Category!

Royal+Dragonfly+Book+Award+Seal

It is a sad story line but carefully composed in rhyme and very young children might not fully understand the situation. They know dogs get adopted which is a happy thought in their minds. Primary age children will probably “get the drift” but be able to understand without becoming upset. It is sad for all of us when older relatives face such difficulties. This book can be helpful to families in several life situations.

Bear-the-Only-PetOne of my friends just adopted a dog as the owner passed away right after her dog also did so. Children can learn about these situations and have some understanding for people and dogs in this situation.

My friend had her last dog, Annabelle for 12 1/2 years… but Annabelle became very ill and was totally blind. I remember getting Christmas letters about Annabelle. The vet and my friend decided it was time to have the dog put to sleep. She has always had a dog, so she wanted to find a new dog! As a big fan of adopting if possible, she looked on Petfinder. Bear was at a no-kill shelter in Iowa. His owner had recently died and Bear needed a new home. It was a sad situation because Bear and another dog and a cat were in the house for three days after their owner died before anyone found them. ☹️ He is 9 years old… some people aren’t interested in an older dog…but Bear is perfect for her! He is already house-trained…he does not bark much…and he’s very friendly! Bear has been on so many walks my friend is getting in her 10,000 steps every day. Bear got along with a cat she has been babysitting…but thinks he will like being an only pet. I think so, too.

Your family or students probably know of situations where a dog or another pet was adopted. Sharing these stories before reading Rufus Finds a Home will help with the pre-reading anticipatory set for getting the most out of this book by Theodore Jerome Cohen.

Ted loves reading to K-3 classes, because the children are so engaged. He has provided 40 classes on mystery writing to 9th graders at a high school where his YA novel, The Hypnotist (written under his pen name, Alyssa Devine), is in the curriculum.

Cohen-Pepe-Bullying-Newtown-Friends-2017

Back to First Grade by Susan Cohen

The following story was written by Ted’s wife, Susan.

My husband, Ted, has always been great with kids.  His easy humor, gentle way of speaking, and ability to talk to them without speaking ‘down to them’ make him a sought-after classroom guest in several Bucks County schools.

And so it was this past February.  Having spoken to students in the 5th and 6th grades at Newtown Friends School a year ago about his young adult novel, The Hypnotist, an elementary teacher at that school asked Ted to return to talk about his new series of illustrated children’s storybooks, Stories for the Early Years.  This time, his audience was the school’s 1st graders.  It was a match made in heaven.

Ted entranced the 6-7 year olds with tales of Antarctica, pictures of penguins and killer whales, and a personal reading of his storybooks: Pepe [the penguin] Builds a Nest, Rufus Finds a Home, and Fuzzy Wuzzy.  Because each book contained one or more morals pertinent to their young lives, Ted wondered if some of the children might be too young to comprehend the underlying messages.

The 1st graders did not disappoint.  The group not only understood, without explanation, that stealing and bullying are bad (Pepe), that an old, feeble man must find a new home for the dog he loved (Rufus), and that children should do what they are told to do (Fuzzy), but they also spouted gems of wisdom.  “You should not steal from others!” “Even if you love something, sometimes you have to let it go.” “You better listen to your mother!”

These young children enjoyed their “older than dirt” visitor (this is what Ted told one child who asked his age!). But really, it was the young-at-heart gentleman who most enjoyed the experience.

Ted thanks Kirsten Orechiwsky, a 1st grade teacher, for inviting him to spend a joyous morning with her students.

Rufus Finds a Home Book Review and Free Resource

Now for the free instant download educational resource PDF.

 Rufus-dog-story-printable-pages

There are some coloring and a writing page for the young learner, and word cards for story retelling and discussion for the primary grade learners. The first page has some teacher talk, and you will probably think of additional ways to use the materials. Rufus-Finds-a-Home-educational-resource-free
This video shows some of the pages in the freebie. When I was sick with blood clots, Miss Owl wanted to give me a pinata to help me feel better. We had that thought in mind when we wondered how we might cheer up someone who had to give a dog away. It is a better idea for a child, of course.

Thank you for reading, Carolyn

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Fuzzy Wuzzy Posters and Paper Puppets Free PDF
 
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About the Author:

Carolyn Wilhelm is the author of The Wise Owl Factory site and blog. She has an MS in Gifted Education, a MA in Curriculum and Instruction K-12, and has completed the KHT Montessori 12 month program. She makes mostly free resources for teachers and parents.

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