Grandpa’s BIG adventure by Paul Newman and illustrated by Tom Jellett is a story of adventure told by a grandfather to his grandson – and what a great story he tells!
Grandpa is teaching his grandson how to swim (and his grandson is a little apprehensive like many young swimmers are) and to help ease him into the water he tells him of a great adventure he once had when he swam around the world.
The story grandpa tells is amazing and one which we all want to believe in, even when he tells of the time he met the Prince of Whales! The illustrations highlight the wonderful adventure with brilliant colours and quirky illustrations and tell more of the story to a young readers eyes.
If we all had a grandpa like this who ignited imagination we would never fear anything as we would know that someone has gone through these emotions before – such an important message for young children.
What can you do with this story?
Geography ~ Numeracy ~Literacy
- As you read this story pull out a map of the world and look where you could swim to.
- Look at all of the different bodies of water in the world.
- Where do people swim? Where don’t people swim? Work out reasons why!
- Measure distances between countries and bodies of water.
- Pose problems – if grandpa swam 1km an hour, how long would it take him to swim to New Zealand from Australia?
- What are the longest distances different people have swum anyhow did they do it?
- Can you tell a tall story that would help encourage someone?
- Do you think grandpa did any of the things in this story?
- Look at the inside back and front covers – what else did grandpa do whilst on his adventure? Can you add some extra tales to this story?
- How do the illustrations change the meaning of the text? Read this book without looking at the pictures – ask students to tell you what they can see in their minds and then show them the image. Give students a sentence (or they create their own) where the sentence can have more than one meaning.
Word play and extension
- Idioms – there are so many wonderful idioms in this story, try and find them! Then explore some more ambiguous sentences and draw your own illustrations.