Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Age Range: 5 to 11
For the first time in a decade, Willy Wonka, the reclusive and eccentric chocolate maker, is opening his doors to the public--well, five members of the public, actually. The lucky five who find a Golden Ticket in their Wonka bars will receive a private tour of the factory, given by Mr Wonka himself. For young Charlie Bucket, this a dream come true.
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- Retell the story from the point of view of one of the other children.
- Retell the story from the point of view of an Oompa Loompa.
- Write a letter from each of the children to Mr. Wonka after their visit to the factory.
- Write a newspaper article which gives information about the day of the visit to the factory.
- Imagine that the was one more ticket available and a new child found it. What are they like? How do they feel about visiting the chocolate factory?
- Look at the illustration of Charlie's house. Can you think of words to describe it? Could you write a paragraph, or more, about it? How is it similar / different to your house?
- Imagine that Charlie kept a diary. Write about the days leading up to his discovery of the golden ticket. Write about the days after his trip to the factory.
- Charlie's grandparents were 'as shrivelled as prunes' and 'as bony as skeletons'. Can you think of other similes to describe things?
- Spies used to steal Willy Wonka's recipes. Write a top secret report from a spy about what they have seen inside the factory.
- Roald Dahl uses words like 'repulsive' and 'repulsive' to describe the Gloop family. Can you think of any other similar adjectives? Can you think of more positive adjectives?
- Can you perform some of the scenes in the story as a drama activity, e.g. When Charlie buys a chocolate bar using the coin that he has found, When he goes to tell his family about the ticket, When Willy Wonka gives Charlie the factory.
- Make up names for some of Wonka's newest chocolate bars, using the old names as a starting point for ideas.
- Read the play adaptation of the book and perform it to others. Use it to learn about play scripts and how they are presented.
- There is 'complete pandemonium' in Charlie's house when he finds the golden ticket. What does this mean?
- Write a biography for Willy Wonka… Where was he born? What was his life like when he was growing up? What amazing adventures has he had throughout his life?
- Create a storyboard which shows different scenes from the book, e.g. Mr. Wonka greeting the children when they first arrive at the factory, the exploration of the chocolate room, travelling in the great glass lift.
- Willy Wonka warns the children not to get lost when they first enter the Chocolate Factory. Imagine that one of them does wander off where they shouldn't. What might they discover?
- Everything is made of sweets and chocolate in the Chocolate Room. Imagine that your classroom is made of similar things and describe what it is like.
- The Oompa Loompa use words like 'gorge', 'guzzle', 'feed' and 'feast' in their songs to describe one of the children eating. Can you think of any other synonyms?
- Identify rhyming words in the Oompa Loompa's songs. Can you find more words that rhyme with these? Could you make a rhyming dictionary?
- Imagine that you were given a stick of Willy Wonka's chewing-gum meal. Write some sentences / paragraphs to describe how it tastes and how the delicious flavours change as you chew it.
- Compare the illustrations of the children arriving at and leaving the factory. How have the children changed?
- Look at these two trailers for the film versions of the book. How are they similar / different? Which portrayal of the film do you prefer? Why?
- Think of words and phrases to describe chocolate and sweets. Look at pictures for inspiration (see Resources below).
- Use these wonderful comprehension sheets contributed by Jonathan Gray.
- Find out about the stage version of the book. Could you produce your own performance? You can also download a set of free resources linked to the stage production here.
- Look at a selection of chocolate bars and sweet packets. Find out how much they weigh. Put the items in order, from the lightest to the heaviest.
- Make a list of chocolate bars and their prices. Can you make some word problems using this information?
- Find a recipe for making a chocolate cake. Can you use ratio to work out the ingredients needed for different numbers of people?
- Grandpa Joe offers Charlie a silver sixpence that he has been hiding. Can you investigate pre-decimal currency and find out how it differs from current denominations?
- Charlie finds a 50p coin in the street. Find out what can be bought with just 50p. Explore how many fifty pence coins would be needed to buy certain items (e.g. a toothbrush, a magazine, a television).
- Try the Wonka's Weight Word Problems (see Resources below).
- Charlie walks past the chocolate factory every day and smells the delicious chocolate. Later, he goes on to taste some of the delicious treats. Use this as a starting point for learning about different senses.
- Prince Pondicherry wanted a palace made of chocolate. Discuss why chocolate might not be a very good building material.
- If someone was given a lifetime supply of chocolate (like the children in the story), what might be the effect on their body?
- Willy Wonka 'invented a way of making chocolate ice cream so that it stays cold for hours and hours without being in the refrigerator.' Could you investigate the best insulators to keep a pack of chocolate ice cream cold?
- Charlie's house has 'little jets of freezing air' rushing through it. Investigate how houses are insulated to keep them warm and to save energy.
- Learn how chocolate is made.
- Mike Teavee has to be given vitamins to fatten him up after he is shrunk. Find out what vitamins do to our bodies. What effects to different vitamins have?
- Find out where the ingredients of a chocolate bar come from. Could you plot these on a map?
- Research chocolate factories around the world. Could you visit some of them, e.g. Cadbury World.
- Make a map of the chocolate factory showing the different rooms described in the book.
- Imagine that you could be sent anywhere in the world by TV. Where would you like to travel to? Why would you like to go there? How else could you travel there and how long would it take?
- Draw a family tree which shows the members of Charlie Bucket's family.
- Design a golden ticket to be hidden inside a chocolate bar.
- Draw pictures of the different expressions on Charlie's face at various points in the story, e.g. When he opens his birthday chocolate bar and doesn't find a golden ticket, when he finds the 50p in the street, when he meets Mr. Wonka for the first time…
- When Willy Wonka describes Loompaland, he explains that it has 'thick jungles infested by the most dangerous beasts in the world - hornswogglers and snozzwangers and those terrible wicked whangdoodles.' Could you create a new creature from Loompaland? Could you add labels to show its different features?
- Draw a picture of the Inventing Room in the chocolate factory. What happens inside there?
- Design some lickable wallpaper for your bedroom. What would it have on it?
- The Oompa Loompas make up lots of songs throughout the story. Could you compose a tune for some of their songs? Could you make up new lyrics to describe another of the events in the story?
- Listen to this soundtrack to the 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' ride at Alton Towers. Could you compose your own soundtrack for a film / ride about the book?
- Watch this video about the creation of the 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' ride at Alton Towers. Could you design your own ride linked to the book? Could you make a prototype?
- Design a machine to help Mr. Bucket screw toothpaste caps on more quickly.
- Design a new boat / craft which travels along the chocolate river.
- Look at examples of different chocolate bars and sweets (see Resources below). Can you design your own chocolate bar and packaging?
- Plan and perform a new dance for the Oompa Loompas.
- S Lovell has contributed a set of Wonka's Weight Word Problems that you can use.
- Don't forget to explore our Chocolate themed resources too!