The witch and her cat fly happily over forests, rivers and mountains on their broomstick until a stormy wind blows away the witch’s hat, bow and wand. They are retrieved by a dog, a bird and a frog, and each animal asks for a ride on the broom. One after the next climbs on, until the broom is so heavy that it snaps in two! What will happen next as they tumble into a bog and meet a greedy dragon?
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- Look at the rhyming words in the book. Is there a pattern to the rhyming? Can you think of other words that rhyme?
- Draw your own character and create a rhyme to describe them.
- Look at the use of punctuation within the story. Can you explain why each type of punctuation has been used?
- The dog ‘bounded’ with a hat in his jaws. Think of other words to describe how a dog moves.
- Create another page for the book, on which a new animal finds something else that the witch has dropped.
- The ‘horrible beast’ that rises from the ditch makes lots of strange noises. Can you think of other animal noises? Can you find other examples of onomatopoeia?
- Peter Fogarty has kindly contributed a set of Thinking Hat resources linked to the book (see Resources below).
- Could you plan and record a puppet show based on the story, like these?
- Measure a broom and investigate what different objects could fit along its length.
- Investigate the strength of the wind and how we can protect ourselves from it.
- Find out different ways of repairing a broken broom. Which materials would be the best?
- Use Switchzoo to create a new creature (like the ‘horrible beast’) by combining other animals.
- Could you make your own stop-motion animation based on the book, like this one?
- Design a new broom that can carry the witch and all of her animal friends.
- Draw or paint a picture of the witch and her animals, or the dragon that they encounter.
- Read the description of the ‘horrible beast’ that rises from the ditch and use it to draw the creature.
- Could you record the story, with music and sound effects, like this one?
- Look at how the weather changes throughout the story.
- Find out how wind strength is measured.
- Draw a map showing where the witch and the animals travelled to.
- Look at the different types of landscapes the witch flies over.Can you find similar landscapes near your local area using a map or an atlas?
- Look at the expressions of each of the characters in the illustrations. Can you describe how they are feeling? Could you draw your own pictures which show different people’s emotions?
- The witch is grateful to the animals for saving her life. Think of things that you are grateful for. How could you say ‘thank you’ for these?