Download a pack of teacher notes and resources for Nicola Davies and Petr Horacek’s ‘A First Book of Animals’.

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Trash? is a gem of a book for an English teacher – the kind that doesn’t come around that often. ?It’s a fast-paced thriller with a highly driven plot that swirls along with increasing fervour building ?to a beautiful climax; it’s told by multiple equally loveable narrative voices; offers itself to a range of ?moral discussions and could inspire some wonderful creative work from the students. ?

It would be just as suitable for a class of keen readers as it would for those more hesitant readers ?who enjoy a fast moving plot and not too many words on a page.

These resources are pitched at Year 8 but an enthusiastic Year 7 class would also do well with the ?book. ?The book would be valuable for assessment of a range of focuses, but these are the ones that have ?been specially identified for the suggested activities.

A scaffold for creating new spells based on those in the book. Most of the words are already there, allowing the children to focus on the rhyming element and the “bippety-bop” words.


A sheet for recording sets of rhyming words found in the book and adding new ones of your own. Presented as spell-like flashes.


Using the ideas of “The Professor of Form”, we used geo-boards to create 2d shapes. once photographed, the children filled in the details of the shape including the opportunity to show their wider knowledge. E.g parallel and perpendicular lines, symmetry, angles.

They were then given the chance to develop their learning by transforming their original shapes into 3d shapes.


A reflection is added at the end. by showing their thinking skills, we ask the children to tell us what new learning was taken from the activity and how they could improve/extend their knowledge.


Using the boxing clever format helped the children plan and write their own version of The Witch with an Itch story.