Beyond the Book – How Old is Grandma?

This book was provided by the author for review. Bookshop and Amazon affiliate links are included in this post.

Book Summary

Have you ever wondered how old your grandparents are? Kendall asks both of his parents that very question on his grandma’s birthday. You can’t have a birthday without cake and you can’t have cake without candles. The only issue is Kendall isn’t sure how many candles are needed. After a pretty adventurous afternoon, Kendall finds out that grandma isn’t quite as old as he thinks. Written by Antoinette Simmonds, How Old is Grandma is sure to provide a few chuckles.


4 – 8 years

Pre-reading activity:

Discuss what you see on the cover of the book and ask your child to predict what the story may be about. Describe the expressions on each character’s face. Have you ever guessed how old someone is? Make a prediction about how many candles the boy should put on grandma’s cake.

During the story:

Have your child predict the text based on the illustrations. Provide definitions and connections for any of the target vocabulary words listed below that may be unfamiliar. Ask questions throughout the story to help your child comprehend what is being read. Have your child repeat unfamiliar words.

Example Questions:

  • What sport does Kendall love to play?
  • Kendall said he may put two thousand candles on grandma’s cake. Is that a silly answer?
  • Finish this question. How old is _________ ?
  • Why do you think Kendall’s parents told him to wait to ask grandma in person how old she was?
  • How many candles will you put on your next birthday cake?
  • Show me how you stretch. Is it good to stretch before playing a sport or exercising?
  • Why did grandma need to take a nap?
  • Tell me about a time when you got really tired.
  • What did Kendall start calling his grandma at the end of the story?
  • Describe your grandparent or an older person you know. What do they like to do? Do they move fast or slow? What types of activities do you complete together?

Target Vocabulary

a very large number
a structure that goes out from the shore into the water
Spanish for afternoon nap or period of rest
to move the arms and legs in positions that make the muscles long and tight

a violent and destructive storm that moves powerful wind around a central point

to move in an unsteady, side-to-side motion

a short stick with a curved handle usually used to help someone walk


Have your child re-read the book in their own words using the illustrations. After reading, select a person in your family that you can call. Play a hot or cold guessing game to figure out their age.


Dress Like a Grandparent

Wouldn’t it be hilarious to dress up like a grandparent after reading this book? Using any items you can find around the house, see if you and your child can pull together the perfect grandparent costume. Cardigans, suspenders, maybe even a little powder in their hair! Check out Maya’s example above. She said grandmas wear pearls, cardigans, and glasses. Sounds about right to me!

Thanks to Antoinette Simmonds and her team over at Nana’s Bookshelf, we’ve partnered to close out the year with a giveaway. One of you could win your own copy of How Old Is Grandma? It would be a great book to read with a grandparent or an older person in your life. Head over to our Instagram or Facebook page to enter!

Many thanks to Nana’s Bookshelf for providing us with a copy of How Old Is Grandma? It is available now on Bookshop, Amazon, and everywhere books can be purchased!

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