Stay: A Girl, a Dog, a Bucket List

Stay: A Girl, a Dog, a Bucket List
Written by Kate Klise, Illustrated by M. Sarah Klise

Publisher’s Summary:
Eli the dog has been with Astrid since her parents brought her home from the hospital as a baby. Now Astrid is getting older, and so is Eli. Before he slows down too much, Astrid wants to make fun memories with him. So she makes a bucket list for Eli, which includes experiences such as eating with him in a restaurant and taking him down a slide at the playground.

But in the end, what is most important to Eli is the time he spends with Astrid, whom he loves dearly. Sisters Kate and M. Sarah Klise have created a story that reminds readers of all ages that time with our loved ones is the most precious gift of all.

Primary Source Pairing:
The relationship between Astrid and Eli is special and heartwarming. Invite students to share pictures of their dogs on a featured bulletin board in the library or a shared space in the school. To add a writing component, distribute talk bubble sticky notes or print a template for students to write a sentence about what their dog is thinking, similar to the way we read the thoughts of Eli in the book. For this primary source pairing, I have included a picture of my childhood dog, a Vizsla named Gracie. She loved running, eating, and running (she really loved running!). Her thought would be “How far can I run before they catch up to me?”

Questions for Discussion:

  • What do you notice first?
  • What animals and objects are shown?
  • How are they arranged?
  • What is the physical setting?
  • What is happening in the image?
  • What is the dog thinking? Why?

Book Cover and Summary: Follett
Gracie the Vizsla: JMarek