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Auntie Claus and the Key to Christmas

Last updated Monday, December 3, 2007

Author: Elise Primavera
Date of Publication: 2002
ISBN: 0152024417
Grade Level: 3rd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Dec. 2007

Synopsis: From Amazon.com: Finally, Chris will learn the Kringle family secret--that his great-aunt Auntie Claus, inhabitant of penthouse 25C of New York City's Bing Cherry Hotel, is Santa Claus's older sister! When Chris overhears someone say that only babies believe in Santa Claus--and then repeats the rumor!--he is immediately summoned by Auntie Claus for tea, marmalade cake, and a talking-to. During teatime he learns of the PRUNES--Parade Rainers United National Elite Society (people who would dare to say there's no Santa) as well as the B-B-and-G List (Bad-Boys-and-Girls) that Santa makes each year. Taking it all with a grain of salt, Chris decides to use the scientific method: he'll behave so boorishly that he'll get on the List--if he still gets presents, he'll know it's all a hoax. Sophie attempts to demystify Christmas for him once and for all, sending him up in a magical elevator to the North Pole where he discovers (1) he made the List, (2) PRUNES exist, and (3) Santa exists.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  What is the key?
•  Who is Auntie Claus?
•  Has anyone heard of Chris Kringle? Or other names for Santa Claus?

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Why does he believe the Spam twins?
•  Why is his family upset when he repeats the rumor?
•  How would you get on the B-B-and-G list? Would it be worth it?
•  Where does the elevator go?
•  What is her annual business trip?

Craft ideas:
•  Write a letter to Santa
•  Create a hat
•  Moon Santa/ sleigh

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don't have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!