SynopsisA strange creature arrives pulling a big suitcase and the other animals are curious to find out what is inside.
Lesson accessvia url-link or QR-Code
Equipment tablet, phone or laptop, internet connection, perhaps headphones
Resourcesdictionary (online or paper), craft materials
Language Skillslistening, vocabulary (verbs), speaking (acting out)
Cross-curricular Linkscitizenship, geography, art and design, music
Valuesaccepting and welcoming newcomers, trust, tolerance and kindness, displacement
World Event DayWorld Refugee Day

Mini Picturebook e-Lessons: Guidelines

STEP 1: Look at the Cover

Look & DescribeWhat creatures do you see on the front cover? Describe the creatures: their colour, their expressions, their posture, their feelings.
Listen& IdentifyClose your eyes and listen to the sound from the picturebook trailer. Which sounds can you hear? Which musical instruments can you hear? How does the music make you feel? What do you think is happening? Link
PredictWhere do you think the creature with the suitcase has come from? Where do you think he is going?
PredictWhat do you think is in the suitcase?  Is it light or heavy?
ThinkThink of 3 questions you would like to ask the blue creature.
Check Look up the meaning of these verbs: to trust, to tell the truth, to lie.
Step 2 and Step 3: Listen and Watch
Part AListen and watch for general understanding and enjoyment.
Part BListen and watch again and answer the questions, pause and replay when you need to.
What did the strange animal look like when he arrived? Why?
 What is the first question the other creatures ask? 
 What is in the suitcase?
 Do the other creatures believe him? Do you believe him?
 What do the creatures decide to do while the stranger is sleeping?
 Do they all agree this is the right thing to do?
 What do they find in the suitcase? What does the photograph represent?
What does the stranger dream about while he is sleeping?
 Pause the video. What do you think the stranger is going to find when
he wakes up? 
 What did the other creatures do while he was asleep?  How does this
make them feel? Why?
 Pause the video. What do you think the tiny problem could be?
 What do you think the two pictures on the last page represent?
Step 4: Add your Voice
Review & noticeWatch the story again and notice the different colours in the illustrations and the dialogues. How do they help you understand the story and how do they make you feel?
SpeculateThe strange animal has been travelling for a long time and come a long way from his home. Why do you think he has had to travel a long way from his home?
WatchWatch the picturebook trailer (sound and images). What are the sound effects? Which part of the story does the trailer show? Was it what you expected? Link
ImagineImagine you suddenly had to leave your home. What would you put in your suitcase to remind you of home?
Review & ThinkWhich creature distrusts the stranger the most? Why do you think he does not trust him?
Act outAct out the story using different voices for each of the creatures.
Draw & TranslanguageUse the Nosy Crow activity sheet to draw your home. What makes your home special and what would you miss about it if you had to leave? How do you say ‘home’ in the language(s) you speak? What about your classmates? Add the words to your drawing.  Nosy Crow Download
PersonaliseHas someone new ever arrived in your class or street? How did you feel? What did you do to welcome them?
ResearchHow many people are displaced in the world today? What are some of the reasons for this?
Your opinionWhich is your favourite part of the story? Why?
ThinkWhat is the message of this story?
Step 5: Share and Evaluate your work
ShareSend your work to your teacher or share in your virtual classroom.
EvaluateComplete the evaluation sheet to reflect on your learning.

Need Help ? Part A: Read and complete. You can write or say your answers. You can do this on your own, in pairs or in a class discussion.
Part B: Think about how well you did. Choose and draw the smiley face that fits best.

Teacher Notes

Want More?
1Watch children from Britain ask children questions about the refugee crisis. Link
2Do you drink tea?  If yes, what do you drink it in? Find out in which countries people drink tea. Design your own teacup.
3How do you think the story continues? Choose one of the creatures and continue the story from his perspective or make an online comic strip.  Link to Storyboard Tool

Learn to draw the characters from The Suitcase with Chris Naylor-Ballesteros.

Learn Sign Language

If you enjoyed the read aloud, why not learn some Sign Language. Watch Leanne sign The Suitcase and learn how to sign: suitcase, tea cup, table and chair.

©Ellis, G. & Gruenbaum, T. for PEPELT 2020

The Suitcase by Chris Naylor-Ballesteros, published by Nosy Crow, 2019

Video © Nosy Crow