Author: Margaret Wise Brown

24 to 35 Months Storybooks

A little bunny decides he is going to run away, but no matter what outlandish scheme he creates, mother bunny will be there to find him. A great book to read to discuss feelings, or use as a “settling down for the day” book.

Before, During and After Reading

Letter and Word Knowledge

Ask your child to touch the words on the front cover and then you touch the words and read the title. Introduce the names of the author and illustrator.  

“The title of this book is The Runaway Bunny. The author who wrote the words is Margaret Wise Brown, and the illustrator who made the pictures is Clement Hurd.”  

Oral Language

Use the front cover of the book to help your child make a prediction of what the story might be about. For example, you might say: “What do you see on the front cover of this book? What is the bunny doing? The title of this story is The Runaway Bunny. Do you think this bunny will run away?”  

Oral Language

Read the first page where the bunny decides he wants to run away. Ask your child what she thinks about that.

“Why do you think the bunny wants to run away? How do you think the mother feels?”

On the pages where there are no words, pause to look at them, find the bunny and talk about what you see.

Phonological Awareness

Clap the syllables in pictures throughout the story. For example, on the pages where no words appear, choose a picture and say the word slowly, clapping each syllable. You might say:

“I see something hiding in the grass. Can you guess what I see? Listen:  bun…ny. What do I see? A bunny.”

                                                                                                                                        clap  clap

Your child may not grasp this skill at first. Just keep demonstrating simple examples with one or two syllables. Over time, she will start to catch on.


Ask your child if she had a favorite part in the story. What did she like and why?

Ask your child to choose her favorite character from the story. Gather or create props that can be used to role play parts of the story to reinforce new vocabulary. For example:

  • Pretend to be a fisherman who just caught a trout by creating a fishing pole out of a pencil and a string.
  • Pretend to be a gardener who is tending her garden of crocuses by going outside and pulling weeds.
  • Pretend to be a circus performer who is walking a tightrope by placing a belt, string or rope that your child can walk across.

Beginning Writing

Create your own runaway bunny book. Ask your child, “If you were a bunny, where would you go?”  Provide crayons or markers and encourage your child to draw a picture of her bunny. Ask your child to tell you about the picture.