The Cloudspotter

Age Range: 2 - 11

Have you ever looked up at the sky to see a whole new world developing in the clouds? You have? Then you'll love this book about Franklin. There isn't a single cloud that Franklin can't spot - big ones, small ones, silly ones, sneaky pretend-they-can't-see-you ones. But when Scruffy Dog comes along, things begin to change for Franklin. How can he concentrate on cloudspotting when Scruffy is such a distraction? And what's more important - his hobby or his friend?


Book Author: Tom McLaughlin

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Teaching Ideas and Resources:

English

  • Write a character profile about Franklin / The Cloudspotter.
  • Retell the story from The Cloudspotter's (or the Scruffy Dog's) point of view.
  • Think of some questions that you would like to ask The Cloudspotter. How might he answer them?
  • Write a story about some of the cloud formations in the illustrations.
  • Ask a friend to draw a picture of a cloud formation and use this as the starting point for your own story. You could also try this activity with a photograph of clouds.
  • Make a list of words and phrases that could be used to describe clouds.
  • Cloudspotter is an example of a compound word. Can you think of any more?
  • The Cloudspotter thinks that the dog is 'Scruffy' and 'bothersome'. Can you think of other words and phrases to describe her?
  • Think of some captions or speech / thought bubbles to accompany the pictures in the book.

Maths

  • Create a survey to count the number of clouds that you can see in the sky at different times of the day or on different days of the week. Can you use the results to create a variety of graphs and charts?

Science

  • What are clouds? Can you find out more about them?
  • Could you create a page that might appear in The Cloudspotter's books about clouds?
  • Make a poster that teaches others about different types of clouds.
  • Create a 'cloud diary' to describe / show what the clouds look like near to your home or school at different times of the day or week.
  • The Cloudspotter sends the Scruffy Dog in a hot air balloon. Can you explain how these work?

Computing

  • Can you take digital photos of different types of clouds? 
  • Use image editing software to add a photo of yourself to pictures of clouds (like the ones in the story).
  • Create a video that teaches others how the water cycle works.

Design Technology

  • What things does the Cloudspotter have in his bag? Design a new bag to hold the things that he needs to carry around with him.
  • Could you create a model of a hot air balloon?

Art

  • Create your own pictures or paintings of different cloud formations. Could you go outside and paint the clouds that are in the sky today?
  • Draw a picture that shows the Cloudspotter's view from up in the hot air balloon.

Geography

  • Try some of these Cloud Activities.
  • Create a diagram that shows how the water cycle works.
  • Can you create your own weather report for the day / week ahead?

History

  • Find out about the history of flight. When were hot air balloons invented?

PSHE

  • Everybody called Franklin 'The Cloudspotter'. What are nicknames? What is the difference between a nice nickname and a nasty one?
  • The Cloudspotter didn't have many friends. If he was trying to make more friends, what could he do?
  • How could you teach the Cloudspotter about the importance of sharing?
  • What did the Cloudspotter learn in this story?

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