Alfie the Apostrophe (Hardcover) by Moira Rose Donohue, illustrated by JoAnn Adinolfi. Albert Whitman, 2006. ISBN: 0807502553. pages: 32. ages: 6-8, grades 1-3


Alfie is worried about his audition for the punctuation mark talent show. He almost misses his chance, but with last minute courage he performs his word tricks flawlessly.


  1. Study the illustrations to find the punctuation shape in each of the characters. Choose three letters or numbers and use JoAnn Adinolfi’s technique to make them resemble people.

  2. Why did Mr Asterisk tell Alfie that he had already called the commas?

  3. Why did one of the quotation marks tease Alfie by asking, "Aren’t you missing something?"

  4. How does "turning away" describe an apostrophe?

  5. What is Morse code? Use Morse code to send a message to a friend.

  6. Write five other word pairs that Alfie could have used for his first trick. Beside each pair write what the audience would see after Alfie raised the scarf.

  7. Use names of students in your class to write five things Alfie could have done for his last trick. Use items other than the doll.

  8. Play one of these online activities to practice using punctuation.
  9. Look at a story that you have written. Where do you need punctuation marks?

  10. To the teacher: Use your own words to explain this activity.
    Make a chart with three columns. In the first column write the name of one of the kinds of punctuation marks in the talent show. In the second column write what the performance was. In the third column write why this performance was appropriate.
    -example and extension-

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Alfie the Apostrophe. Accelerated Reader: Quiz #106008 EN; Book Level 3.2; Points= 0.5

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