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The BFG



Last updated Monday, July 6, 2009

Author: Roald Dahl
Illustrator: Quentin Blake
Date of Publication: 1982
ISBN: 0374304696
Grade Level: 4th    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Jul. 2009

Synopsis: Amazon.com Review Evidently not even Roald Dahl could resist the acronym craze of the early eighties. BFG? Bellowing ferret-faced golfer? Backstabbing fairy godmother? Oh, oh ... Big Friendly Giant! This BFG doesn't seem all that F at first as he creeps down a London street, snatches little Sophie out of her bed, and bounds away with her to giant land. And he's not really all that B when compared with his evil, carnivorous brethren, who bully him for being such an oddball runt. After all, he eats only disgusting snozzcumbers, and while the other Gs are snacking on little boys and girls, he's blowing happy dreams in through their windows. What kind of way is that for a G to behave? The BFG is one of Dahl's most lovable character creations. Whether galloping off with Sophie nestled into the soft skin of his ear to capture dreams as though they were exotic butterflies; speaking his delightful, jumbled, squib-fangled patois; or whizzpopping for the Queen, he leaves an indelible impression of bigheartedness.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  What could BFG stand for? (Have kids look at the cover picture and lead them to “giant” and “big” and “does he look mean or friendly”?)

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Have you ever experienced a moonbeam? What is a moonbeam?
•  Have you ever experience witching hour? What is the witching hour?
•  What do you think is blowing through the window of the Goochey’s house?
•  Has something scary every happened to you in the middle of the night?
•  Where do you think the giant is taking Sophie?
•  (p19) cannybull, cannibal (p20) human beans, human beings. The above words sound similar, but the Giant’s words sound a little different. Do you know people from different countries? Does their English/Spanish sound different?
•  If Greeks taste Greasy, and Turks taste like turkey, what do you think Americans taste like? What do you think you taste like?
•  If you met a giant, would you tell people? Do you think they'd believe you?
•  Do you believe in things you can't see?

Craft ideas:
•  Make a map of giant land.
•  Draw a picture of your imaginary giant and write characteristics about it on the other side of the paper.
•  Cut out a big rock and write down what kind of giant would you want to be. Glue it to another piece of paper and color around it.

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!