Dear Zoo

Age Range: 5 - 11

A letter to the zoo asking for a pet results in a succession being dispatched - all of the deliveries containing highly unsuitable pets! All, of course, except the last one...

Book Author: Rod Campbell

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Teaching Ideas and Resources:


  • Write one of the letters sent to the zoo, asking for one of the animals.
  • Write a letter from the zoo, accompanying one of the animals when it was sent.
  • The book contains lots of adjectives. Look at photos of each animal and think of other adjectives to describe them.
  • Could you write a sequel to the book, which involves someone asking for something but each time they receive a gift, there is something 'wrong' with it?


  • Investigate volume and the amount of space needed to transport animals of different sizes.
  • Find out how much each different animal needs to eat in a day. How much might this cost?


  • Try to find out information about each animal. Where does it live? What does it eat? What does a zookeeper need to do to look after it.
  • Find out about the final animal that was sent by the zoo. Make a poster to teach others how to look after it.

Design Technology

  • Make your own pop-up book with animals hidden under the flaps.



  • Investigate which parts of the world each type of animal lives. Could you plot them on a map?


  • The book was first published in 1982. Can you find other books which were published at a similar time? What was life like in 1982? How have things changed?
  • Parents / older brothers and sisters might have read this book when they were young. Interview them and find out what other books they remember from their childhood.


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