Cleo and Clifford are excited to learn that Cleo will be Clifford's houseguest for a weekend while her house is being painted! But soon Cleo is filling Clifford's doghouse with her stuff, taking over his bed, and butting in on his time alone with Emily Elizabeth. It takes awhile, but Cleo eventually learns that being a good houseguest means respecting the needs of your host.

Clifford's Big Idea: Have Respect; Be a Good Friend

Clifford's Big Idea: Have Respect; Be a Good Friend

Opportunities for role-playing can teach valuable lessons about how to behave in unfamiliar situations and build

  • life skills
  • language and literacy skills

Dramatic Play: Travelin' SuitcaseDramatic Play: Travelin' Suitcase

Pretend that you and the child are about to take a trip. Talk about where you might go, with whom you might stay, and how long you might be gone. Then take out a small suitcase or duffel bag and write or draw a list of things you'll need to pack: toothbrush, toothpaste, clothes, sunscreen, jacket, camera, books, and a favorite stuffed animal, for example. Have the child use the list to collect all the items to bring, and then pack the bag!

Being a Good Houseguest & Thank-you CardsBeing a Good Houseguest & Thank-you Cards

Take a few minutes to talk about what is appropriate houseguest behavior. Each house has its own set of rules, some of which are different from the rules at home and others of which are the same. For example, some families don't allow food beyond the kitchen or dining room; other families ask that everyone take off their shoes at the door.

Create Your Own Thank-You CardsCreate Your Own Thank-You Cards

Homemade greeting cards are a terrific way for kids to express their appreciation for a special event, gift, or visit.

Gather materials for the child to use in creating a personal design for a card:

  • construction paper
  • glue
  • glitter
  • scissors
  • markers or crayons
  • scraps of interesting paper, such as wallpaper
  • a variety of interesting fabrics to glue onto the card

Invite the child to draw and write a thank-you card for a host.

Provide a word bank of words and phrases to choose from, such as

  • thank you
  • good time
  • comfortable
  • fun
  • see you soon

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