The Monster Bed

Age Range: 5 - 11

Little Dennis doesn't want to go to sleep because there might be something under his bed. Dennis isn't afraid of monsters - after all, he's a monster himself. He's afraid that humans will get him. His mother says that humans are only in made-up stories, but Dennis is not convinced.

Book Author: Jeanne Willis

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Teaching Ideas and Resources:


  • Look at the use of rhyming in the story. Can you find the rhyming words?
  • Rewrite the story from Dennis' (or from the boy's) point of view.
  • Can you 'act' the story and perform it to an audience. You might want to find some props to help you and add sound effects / music too.
  • Dennis the monster is frightened of humans. Can you write a new story about something or somebody that is frightened of something unusual (e.g. an elephant that is scared of a mouse, a spider that is scared of flies)?
  • Write a bedtime story for Dennis that will help to calm his fears.
  • Think about a dream that Dennis might have. Can you write a story about it?
  • Imagine that Dennis and the boy met again and became friends. What adventures might they have together?
  • Watch Monsters Inc. and think about the jobs that monsters might have.


  • Imagine that a monster was a real animal and write a report about it, describing its habitat, diet, adaptations etc?(see Resources below).


  • Make a poster that tells people to keep out of the Cobbeldy Cave as a monster has been sighted there.
  • Use art software to create your own monster picture?
  • Use Build Your Wild Self to create your own unusual creature / monster!

Design Technology

  • Use craft materials to make a model of Dennis and / or the cave where he lives.
  • Could you make a life-size model of a monster?


  • Draw a picture of a goblin, ghoulie, gnome, troll, pixie, fairy or monster.
  • Look at existing pictures of monsters. Could you try to recreate one of these using different types of art materials?


  • Compose a tune that will help to calm Dennis at night time.


  • Draw a map of the Withering Wood to help the boy find his way back to school when he gets lost.


  • The boy plays 'truant from school'. What does this mean? Why isn't this a good thing to do?


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