The BFG by Roald Dahl is a great novel to teach in the classroom. The BFG reading activities that go along with it can be highly beneficial to your students because they are engaging and focus on reading comprehension. In this blog post, I will share a few reading activity ideas that you can do while reading the novel!
Why read The BFG in class?
The BFG is a high-interest novel for 3rd-5th graders. It is engaging, funny, and has an element of surprise to it that will keep students wanting to read throughout the novel. The BFG focuses on giants who leave at night to eat people, except the one giant that does not. Sophia, an orphan, gets to know this giant, leading to them working together to save the people the other giants are eating. It is engaging and talks through many complex themes.
The BFG Reading Activities
The characters in this novel are complicated. The BFG especially struggles through the decision to be like his kind or be better. Analyzing characters throughout the novel is essential. Some ways to do this are…
- Finding descriptive words that the author uses to describe each character in the novel
- Looking at the point of view of each character and what they think and see about the countries that they live in
- Having students draw a timeline on how The BFG changes throughout the novel
- Students can describe each character: what they look like, their traits, their motivations, etc.
- Students can visualize scenes by drawing them out and showing what each character would look like
- Acting is a great way to show how characters react and feel throughout different scenes in the novel
There is a TON of figurative language throughout the novel. I would teach a unit on figurative language before reading (this unit is a great one). Then throughout the novel, you could keep a tracker of the different examples of figurative language that they find.
Main Idea Palace
After reading about meeting the queen in her palace, have students draw what they imagine the queen’s palace looks like. Have them draw 4 windows on the palace. Then, above the palace, write the main idea of the last two chapters. In the windows, write details that support that main idea.
Create an 11th Giant
There are 10 giants discussed in the novel. After the novel, a great BFG reading activity would be to have the students create an 11th giant. They can use their understanding of the novel to craft what giant they think could be added to the group!
It is super easy to plan out how to teach each chapter with The BFG reading activities that will engage students. For myself, I taught one or two chapters a day, depending on the time.
Each day would look like this…
- Read a chapter or two and go over discussion questions as you read (read together, with partners, alone, etc.)
- Then, practice one reading skill (theme, point of view, setting, etc.)
- Take a quiz every few chapters to check for understanding of the novel
- Throughout, do fun activities, like having students draw and visualize, act out parts of the story, or even rewrite parts!
Instead of planning all of this out yourself, feel free to grab the unit here! It is no prep and is ready to go for you!