The Tale of Despereaux is the story of a mouse, a princess, some soup, and a spool of thread! It’s a tale of courage and bravery and overcoming the odds. Told in parts (Books) and a Coda showcasing different points of view, it is a great book to use in your classroom or homeschool for a whole class novel study, small book groups, or individual book studies.



The Tale of Despereaux was first published in 2003 by the award-winning, Kate DiCamillo. Among the many awards bestowed upon the novel, it won the acclaimed Newbery Medal in 2004, has been named one of the “Teachers’ Top 100 Books for Children” by the NEA, and was ranked #51 of the all-time best children’s novels by the School Library Journal.

Summary of The Tale of Despereaux:

*From the book jacket

Welcome to the story of Despereaux Tilling, a mouse who is in love with music, stories, and a princess named Pea. It is also the story of a rat called Roscuro, who lives in the darkness and covets a world filled with light. And it is the story of Miggery Sow, a slow-witted serving girl who harbors a simple, impossible wish. These three characters are about to embark on a journey that will lead them down into a horrible dungeon, up into a glittering castle, and, ultimately, into each other’s lives. And what happens then? As Kate DiCamillo would say: Reader, it is your destiny to find out.


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Try a free sample of the novel study for The Tale of Despereaux

Despereaux Tilling is a hero for all time. Despite all the odds stacked against him he courageously faces his quest in this uplifting story of perseverance and bravery to find his true destiny.

I offer a complete novel study to accompany The Tale of Despereaux for use in the classroom or homeschool. The unit includes both a printable format and a Google Drive™ format for use in a paperless classroom or with Google Classroom.

You can purchase this novel study at the following locations:

Are you interested in reading about and sharing ideas with other educators on using children’s literature in your classroom? My goal is to bring together teachers and homeschoolers who teach grades 3-8 and use novels with their students. I’d love for you to join me to learn, share, and grow together!

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