Stuck by Oliver Jeffers
I have recently read this book and I really enjoyed it! It made me smile lots!
Poor Floyd one day gets his kite stuck in the tree but throughout the story he is determined to get it out. How will he do this? Firstly, he chooses an obvious object – a shoe to throw into the tree to try and get his kite down but annoyingly that gets stuck up there too! So what does he do next? Floyd decides to throw his other shoe up there too of course – that also gets stuck! Surely he can think of something that will get his kite unstuck. A ladder? A boat? His front door? An orangutan? This book is great because with each page that you read something or someone gets stuck and obviously the character or object is more silly or ridiculous than the one that came before it. However, Floyd has only one thing on his mind and that is to get his kite un-stuck from the tree and he will literally throw anything up there – even the kitchen sink! This really is a laugh out loud story of a little boy showing great determination to retrieve his kite and the ridiculous situations that happen throughout the story.
This is a great book and the illustrations and story is engaging and the story line is different. I can imagine younger children in KS1 especially enjoying the book and listening to it over and over again. They will enjoy remembering and guessing the next object or character that is going to be thrown up at the tree. I can imagine them shouting out the next object in excitement! The reader will certainly keep wondering what else Floyd could possibly get stuck in the tree. He really does only have one thing on his mind – to get that kite down so obviously it is a little silly and ridiculous! Floyd is just being a kid and he is definitely not thinking straight or being logical but that’s part of the fun of this book.
I have to say that I really enjoy any book written by Oliver Jeffers – he has really written some fab picture books! So if you have not read one yet or used one in your class – this is definitely the time to do it!
Suggested activities to do after reading the book:
- It is funny when Floyd throws up an orang-utan … “an orang-utan to Knock Down the milkman, who surely had somewhere else to be…” Write the story to explain what the orang-utan had to do, where he was and what happened when Floyd caught him. Maybe a diary entry written through the eyes of the orang-utan.
- The story is written in the third person. Could they rewrite it in the first person from Floyd’s point of view? Or write a diary entry of Floyd’s day when he got his kite stuck up a tree. Include lots of feelings, rhetorical questions and chatty, informal style.
- Write a sequel to the book – how did the people, animals and objects get out of the tree.
- Write an apology letter from Floyd to all the objects, animals or objects which were stuck in the tree and left up there.
- Imagine you are one of the people, animals or objects stuck in the tree – send a paper aeroplane down from the tree with a message/plea to Floyd asking him to rescue them and get them down safely.
- Write your own story with the title ‘STUCK.’ What, who might get stuck? How might they get rescued?
- What other objects could Floyd have thrown into the tree? After the orang-utan is thrown into the tree, children to continue the story. What do you think Floyd might throw up into the tree next? Continue story in similar style.
- Design a new kite for Floyd. Who can design the best kite? Think about what it looks like and which kite is best at flying. Who can design the most creative kite for Floyd?
- Facial expressions – how does Floyd feel throughout the story? Can you recreate a facial expression to explain how Floyd is feeling and what emotion is being portrayed? Thought shower adjectives to describe Floyd’s feelings.
- Hot seat Floyd – how was he feeling throughout the story? How did he feel when he got his kite back?
- Produce your own class tree – children to think of their own ridiculous items that they would throw up to help retrieve the kite from the tree.
Great book trailer which you could use to promote the book but after you have read the book with your class!