”Wise old man, won’t you help me, please? My house is a squash and squeeze.”
What can you do if your house is too small? The wise old man knows: bring in a flappy, scratchy, noisy crowd of farmyard animals. When you push them all out again, you’ll be amazed at how big your house feels!
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- Create an estate agent’s advert for the old lady’s house, using persuasive language to encourage people to buy it.
- Rewrite the story in the form of a diary entry from the old lady’s perspective.
- Make a list of words that the author uses instead of ‘small’ (e.g. poky, tiny, titchy, teeny). Can you think of antonyms?
- Make a list of rhyming words used in the story.
- Make a newspaper report about the old lady who invited her animals to live in her house.
- Make a new page for the book in which the old lady invites another animal into her house.
- Watch this video which features the author and illustrator. What questions would you ask them if you have the chance to talk to them?
- At one point in the story, the old lady is ‘tearing her hair out’. Can you think of any other idioms?
- Watch this retelling of the story:
- How many animals lived in the house at different points in the story? How many eyes did they all have? How many legs? How many tails?
- Use publishing software to make a poster to advertise the book to other children.
- Make an animation showing part of the story (e.g. when the cow taps out a jig on the table.
- Design a larger house for the old lady (and the animals) to live in.
- Draw a picture of the old lady and the animals all squashed in the same house.
- Draw a plan view of the old lady’s house, labelling the different parts mentioned in the story.
- Does this story have a moral / message? Can you think of other stories that try to teach us something?