The books in this theme explore the real and imagined worlds of the miniature and the humungous. The books will focus on our fascination with size and the advantages and disadvantages of stepping into a different world or body where size makes a difference.
Some of the books offer opportunities for children to read factual information revealing secrets of the almost invisible lifeforms, to the wonder of measuring the scale of larger wildlife against the size of your hand. These include:
- Nicola Davies Tiny The Invisible World of Microbes
- Steve Jenkins Actual Size
Some of the books enable children to engage with the folklore of Giants and will encourage them to seek out further myths and legends in this genre. These include:
- Luke Pearson Hilda and the Midnight Gang
- Michael Foreman Two Giants
Amongst the other books in the selection are stories that will explore compassion and empathy between humans of different sizes and the bond that exists between humans and animals.
- Benji Davies The Storm Whale in Winter
- David Litchfield Grandpa’s Secret Giant
And the thought provoking and humorous tale of the fate of delicious, tiny people
- Lou Kuenzler Eat Your People
Attach a label saying EAT ME ! to a biscuit or cupcake and a label saying DRINK ME! to a small bottle.
Introduce these two items to the children and ask them to discuss what they know or think about the items. If necessary provide reference to Alice in Wonderland and the idea that when consumed the drink will make you shrink smaller than a mouse and the cupcake/biscuit will transform you to the size of a house.
Place the cupcake on one side of the room and the bottle on the other. Ask the children to move to the object whose consequences they would prefer.
Encourage the children to spend a few minutes talking with someone in their group about why they made that decision.
Provide large sheets of paper for both groups. Allow time for the children to work in pairs or small groups to create pictures and labels illustrating what they imagine life would be like living as a small or huge person in our world.
Gather the class or a group together and share the ideas. Encourage questions and dialogue about the challenges and benefits of the change in size. Offer some prompts:
- would life be easier or harder if you were tiny?
- which size might make you more powerful?
- when does your size matter most?
Challenge the children to think about ideas for a themed reading area which can explore the idea of large and small.
How might we imagine a mighty giant would read in the area? How might a teeny tiny person enjoy the area?
Encourage children to share book recommendations, reviews and ideas from stories by writing in tiny and enormous handmade books.
Add daily/weekly curiosities to a display wall. These can include photos or articles from the internet related to the teeny, tiny, mighty theme. Challenge the children to check the board and make links between the curiosities and the books that they are reading.
Create a display board where the children can draw images and words from the selected books. Provide tiny pencils and magnifying glasses for small words and create giant drawing tools by attaching pencils to large sticks for ginormous words.
Encourage the children to think about, look for and retell stories that also contain large or small characters.
- Why might we be fascinated with stories about giants and fairies?
- Would you rather be a giant fairy or a tiny giant with wings?
- What if all humans were the size of microbes and microbes were the size of elephants?
- Is there such a thing as a biggest number?
- What is the difference between small and cute?
- Is one big adult more important than 3 small children?
- Why do humans grow?
- What questions about size would you share with your friends to encourage them to read the book that you have been reading?