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Read and Discuss: Night in the Country

Explore the quiet sounds of a country, from the thump of an apple falling to the reek, reek, reek of a frog.


  • Night in the Country by Cynthia Rylant

Key Science Concepts

  • Sounds have a source. (A sound can be tracked to its source.)
  • Different objects make different sounds.
  • Sounds vary by volume (loud or soft), and pitch (high or low).


Before you read: Show children the cover, and read the title and author’s name. Ask, What time of day do you think it is? Why? Ask, What sounds do you think you might hear in the country at night?

As you read: You may want to read the book straight through once. On a second reading, point to the illustrations of the different animals and objects. Ask children what sound each animal or object makes. Is it a loud sound or a soft sound? A high or a low sound? Have them imitate the sound.

After you read: Ask, what are some of the sounds the child in the story hears at night in the country? Do you hear some of the same sounds at night where you live? Do you hear different sounds? Then hold up City Lullaby, which you read yesterday. Ask, What are some of the differences between the sounds in the city and the sounds in the country? Have you heard any of the same sounds as in the book? Where were you when you heard them? Was it day or night? Do you think you hear different things depending on whether it’s day or night? Why do you think that?