Text Talk Lesson
How I Became a Pirate
By Melinda Long
Illustrated by David Shannon
Harcourt, Inc. 2003
Summary: A young man named Jeremy Jacobs is surprised to see Pirates come
to shore while playing on the beach. The Pirate crew takes Jeremy with them
thinking he will be a big help burying their treasure chest full of gold. Jeremy
enjoys his time with the pirates until a storm helps him decide he wants to go
home. Jeremy decides he knows the perfect place to bury the treasure - in his
Focus: The focus of this story is to show that while being away from your
parents on an adventure is a good thing, sometimes it doesn‘t take long before
you begin to miss your parents and your family.
Comments and Questions:
Cover: Hold off reading the title until you give the students time to look over the
cover illustration. Ask the students what the little boy and the man are dressed
like. (pirates). Ask what other items do they see that makes them think of pirates.
(parrot, sail in the background) Read the title.
Title Page: Show the title page and ask students what the little boy is doing?
(playing pirate) How do you know the little boy is playing pirate? (sword, hat,
So what’s going on? (A pirate ship is coming to shore and the little boy’s parents
aren’t paying attention).
What has Jeremy been digging in the sand with? (toy shovel, plastic shovel).
So what is going on here? (The pirates are taking Jeremy back to their ship with
How does Jeremy feel about going with the pirates? (happy)
How can you tell Jeremy is happy? (He is smiling).
Do you think this is a big adventure for Jeremy? Why?
Do you remember why Captain Braid Beard and the other pirates took Jeremy
with them? (To help bury their treasure).
Show picture. Uh oh! What happened to the soccer ball? (The shark ate it).
What do we know about pirate’s teeth? (They are green).
Why are pirates teeth green? (No one makes them brush their teeth).
Confused means to not understand what someone is talking about or make
something hard to understand? What does it mean when it says that Braid Beard
looked confused? (He didn’t know what Jeremy mean when he ask about books).
Jeremy was really happy and excited to go on this adventure with the pirates, but
how is he feeling now that he has no one to tuck him into bed and there is a
storm? (scared, frightened).
So what have we found out? (Jeremy enjoyed his adventure with the pirates at
first, but now he is afraid).
Where is Jeremy taking the pirates to bury their treasure? (His own backyard).
Fix the page by putting a “P” on Jeremy’s soccer jersey so that the students can
see the whole word “pirates”. What do you think Jeremy’s soccer shirt says?
Let’s sound it out. (P - I - R - ATES. PIRATES)! So what is the name of Jeremy’s
soccer team? (The pirates). Is that a good name for Jeremy’s soccer team?
What do you think Jeremy learned from his adventure with the pirates? (It was
fun at first, but he began to miss his family). Do you think it was a good idea for
Jeremy to lead the pirates to his backyard to bury the treasure? (Yes, he will be
rich if he wants to dig it up. Yes, maybe the pirates will come back and Jeremy
can go on another adventure with them).
Adventure: In the story Jeremy went off on an adventure with the pirates. An adventure is an
exciting event. Say the word adventure.
I am going to name some things. If you think they could be an adventure, say, “That could be
an adventure.” If you don’t think they could be an adventure, say, “No way.”
Going to the planet Mars (adventure)
Going to the grocery store (no way)
Climbing the highest mountain in the world (adventure)
Going to the dentist (no way)
Flying on an airplane to the other side of the world (adventure)
What is something that you could do or a place where you could go that would be an
adventure? Start your sentence with “For an adventure I would…” (for an example, going with
pirates to bury treasure, going on a boat ride down a river).
What’s our word: adventure
Confused: In the story Braid Beard was confused when Jeremy ask about books. Confused
means to not understand what someone is talking about or to make something hard to
understand. Say the word confused.
Let’s think about things that might confuse us. Which of these things makes you feel
confused or to not understand what is being talked about.
Building with blocks (no)
Finding your way around a big building (yes)
Playing in the park (no)
How the motor in your parent’s car works (yes)
What’s our word: confused
Gulp: In the story the shark gulped the soccer ball. Gulp means to swallow without chewing or to
swallow something fast. Say the word gulp.
Think about something that you like to eat, that you would gulp down. I’m going to say some
things. If you like them and would gulp them down make a gulping noise (demonstrate
gulping sound). If not, say “Yuck!”
Candy (gulp) glue (Yuck)
Birthday Cake (gulp) dirt (Yuck)
Tires (Yuck) Ice cream (gulp)
What’s our word? gulp
We talked about these three words: adventure, confused, and gulp. Let’s thing about them some
Who in the story went on big adventure with the pirates. (Jeremy)
How might you feel if I told you to do a math problem that you had never seen before?
Who in the story gulped down the soccer ball? (The Shark).