Celebrating Children’s Book Week – Castles

posted in: 2. Illustrators and Authors | 7

Here are our plans for Year 1 (5 and 6 year olds) on our special Book Day, as part of Children’s Book Week. Year 1’s theme is “Castles”. Please feel free to reuse, adapt and share any of the resources on this page.

Session 1

Book: Shhh! by Sally Grindley and Peter Utton
Follow up book: Castles by Colin Thompson (which I reviewed here)
Focus Activity: Make a castle pop up card
Resources required: A4 card folded in half, castle template printed on paper and then pre-cut (if working with an older group or with more time in the session, the cutting could be left for the children to do), glue, pens / crayons / pencils to decorate
Independent activities: Giant colouring-in sheets, activity sheet based on local castle (Weoley Castle, NB link is to pdf file), castle dot-to-dot sheets, one from printactivities.com and another from dottodots.net.
Additional books: Castle by David MacCauley, The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde, illustrated by Michael Foreman and Freire Wright. These additional books will be available for children to read / look at during the session, and also if needed by staff to read if there is “spare” time to be filled in the session.

Click here to download the castle template (a pdf file).

To create your card, line up the central fold in the A4 card with the central fold in the precut castle template. Stick glue on castle flaps. The castle should “fit inside” your card, even when the card is folded.

For other ideas about how to use Shhh! by Sally Grindley and Peter Utton in the classroom take a look at these lessons plans from Nursery World.

Session 2

Book: Tell me a dragon by Jackie Morris (which I reviewed here)
Follow up book: There’s No Such Thing as a Dragon by Jack Kent
Focus Activity: Make an egg box dragon inspired by this idea from Nurture Store but simplified to use only 1 egg box per child.
Resources required: egg boxes, paint & a paint brush (optional) , red paper, glue / sticky tape, black felt pens, scissors, googly eyes, green (or other coloured) paper
Independent activities: Castles colouring-in from castles.org, dragon colouring-in and dot-to-dot (latter opens as pdf file)
Additional books: That Pesky Dragon by Julie Sykes, The Knight and the Dragon by Tomie dePaola and Dexter Bexley and the Big Blue Beastie on the Road by Joel Stewart (which I reviewed here). These additional books will be available for children to read / look at during the session, and also if needed by staff to read if there is “spare” time to be filled in the session.

The egg carton can be painted if desired. Otherwise cut out tongue, tail and spines printed on red paper and glue to the egg carton. To create eyes, scrunch up paper into tight balls and glue them on top of the egg carton. Finally add googly eyes and draw on nostrils.

Session 3

Book: The Little Flower King by Kveta Pacovska
Follow up book: The Thistle Princess by Vivian French, illustrated by Elizabeth Harbour
Focus Activity: Planting tulips (in The Little Flower King the palace gardens are planted full with tulips)
Resources required: Tulip bulbs, soil, pots, containers (or a patch or earth, plus small spades)
Independent activities: Designing flags to hang from castle ramparts, using this (pdf) template, cocktail sticks and glue, two castle mazes, one featuring a knight, the other a unicorn and designing your own coat of arms.
Additional books: The Pea and the Princess by Mini Grey, Sleeping Beauty: A Pop-Up Book by Louise Rowe.

Photo: Noel Reynolds

As these are the session for the new Year 1 children (mostly aged 5) who are transitioning out of Foundation stage there will also be lots of free play activities available including castle toys with plastic figures, sandcastle building in the sandpits, and dressing up in the castle role play area.

7 Responses

  1. Zoe

    Thanks Stacey! At the moment I’m so busy with it all it’s hard to think about the fun we should have with it next week 🙂

    • Zoe

      HI Kerri, if it’s as much fun doing it all as I’ve had preparing it, then we should all have a good time!

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