• My affiliate links won't hurt you, but they might help feed my kids. See my full disclosure policy in the main menu.

Outdoor Play-Acting with Bridge to Terabithia


Learn how to get your kids outside this summer AND excited about reading with a little play-acting with Bridge to Terabithia

My youngest boy has had a lifelong love affair with Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson.  Jess is his very favorite children’s book character, and I think he would go live in Terabithia if he could.

Bridge to Terabithia provides an opportunity for you to get your kids outside while still enjoying good literature.

Because summer.  And books.

Always books.

Learn how to get your kids outside this summer AND excited about reading with a little play-acting with Bridge to Terabithia

Play-Acting with Bridge to Terabithia

Bridge to Terabithia is another of those consummate childhood summer books.  It practically begs kids to get outside.  And even though it ends up being sad, it’s full of imagination.  Plus, it offers a lovely lesson about being true to yourself.

There are two ways you can get your kids excited about this book with a little play-acting.

The first is similar to a suggestion in Campfire Reading with Tom Sawyer, and the second is unique to Terabithia.

Read it like a play

You’ll need multiple copies of the book for this so your kids don’t miss their cues.  So you might want to visit your local library.

Have fun outdoors with Bridge to Terabithia and get your kids engaged in reading.Click To Tweet

This is a little more active than the Tom Sawyer idea, which makes it even more fun.

  • Print out this free Character List.
  • Assign a character or characters to your kids. (And if you’re like me, you’ll pick a character for yourself.)
  • Have your kids dress up like their character.
  • Head outside.
  • Read the book together as your kids act out their parts
  • Have your kids read their character’s spoken lines as they act out their parts

I swear, we’ve done this with several books, and it’s not as hard as it sounds.  The great thing about it is that it truly engages kids in the story.

Learn how to get your kids outside this summer AND excited about reading with a little play-acting with Bridge to Terabithia

Download your free character list now

Create your own Terabithia

The real star of this story is the make-believe world Jess and Leslie create.  I’ve never met a kid who didn’t like to make up his own world, so this is a golden activity that will really get your kids thinking about the story.

  • Take the book outside and read about Terabithia
  • Collect some supplies to make your castle stronghold
    • Cardboard boxes
    • Sheets or blankets
    • Scrap wood
    • Pillows for sitting on
    • Anything else that strikes your kids’ fancies
  • Take a notebook to write down your kids’ ideas for their make-believe world
    • What does it look like?
    • Who rules there?
    • What kinds of food do they eat?
    • What is daily life like?
    • Who are their kingdom’s enemies?
  • Let your kids play in their own private Terabithia for as long as they want

I’m telling you, that kingdom could last them all summer.  And the story?  Well, that will last them their entire lives.



Looking for more homeschool tips?  Check out the 10 Days of Tips for Homeschool Moms series and get great advice from me and 20 other bloggers!

You might also like:

Bridge to Terabithia Activities for Learning contains more than 75 activities for reading children to get a better understanding of the book. Great for homeschool or classroom.

Bridge to Terabithia Activities for Learning

Do a spring or summer flower study with The Secret Garden and free printable flower checklist and notebooking pages. Fun summer learning!

A Fun and Fabulous Flower Study with The Secret Garden

There are plenty of Alice in Wonderland activities, but taking the book outside as the main course of a Mad Tea Party is a surefire way to keep your kids interested in reading this summer.

Throw an Outdoor Mad Tea Party with Alice in Wonderland

Read Watership Down outside with your kids this summer and go a fun book-based scavenger hunt with this FREE printable

Free Printable Watership Down Scavenger Hunt

KT Brison
Follow me!
Latest posts by KT Brison (see all)

About KT Brison

KT Brison is a former children’s librarian and educator who gave all that up for the most important job in her life—homeschooling her boys. Though she loves the outdoors and rambling around her farm, she can usually be found with her nose in a book. Any book. As long as it has words.
Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

* Checkbox GDPR is required


I agree

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.