Age Range: 5 to 11
A lazy and fat farmer spends all day in bed, eating chocolates and reading the newspaper, while his poor duck has to do all the work on the farm. One evening, the exhausted duck collapses in tears, to be comforted by chickens. The farm animals are very fond of the duck, and outraged by the farmer's behaviour, so they hatch a plan.
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- There are lots of examples of onomatopoeia in the book (e.g. Moo, Baa, Cluck, Quack). Can you think of any more examples.
- Look at different ways of writing plurals, using animal names as inspiration, e.g. cows, sheep, mice.
- There is a lot of speech in the book. Use this to develop, or reinforce, understanding of speech marks and how they are used.
- 'They stole down the hall' is a sentence from the book. 'Stole' can have more than one meaning. Can you think of other words like this (i.e. Homonyms).
- Could you write the story from the duck's point of view... Or from the farmer's point of view?
- This video shows Martin Waddell talking about Farmer Duck, giving some more ideas for using the story in the classroom:
- Make a timetable for the duck which shows all of the jobs that he has to do each day.
- Find out about the animals on the farm. Why do people keep those animals on a farm? What kinds of jobs do farmers have to do to look after them?
- Look at the illustrations of the farm at the beginning and end of the book. How are they different? Could you draw your own farm pictures in similar styles?
- Investigate farms in your local area... What kinds of farms are they? Could you make contact with the farmer and interview him about his job.
- The book is available in a number of languages. Could you use these to introduce children to other languages?
- The farmer is very lazy. Why are people lazy sometimes? How does this impact on other people? How can we try to stop ourselves from being lazy?
Find more harvest and farming lesson ideas and resources in our Themes area.