peach - roald dahl day
Made it - classroom

Roald Dahl Day

When is Roald Dahl day?


Roald Dahl Day takes place every year on September 13th. (Roald Dahl’s birthday) and this year is very special as it would have been Dahl’s 101st birthday. All over the world, schools and other groups, celebrate this great event.

Each year a different Dahl book is chosen. The book chosen for this year’s  Roald Dahl Day is James and the Giant Peach.  This is a wonderful story, which really catches the imagination of the children.

After James’ parents are sadly killed by a rhino which has escaped from London Zoo, he is forced to live with his awful Aunts – Spiker and Sponge. They are very cruel to him and he has a sad life until he meets an old man who gives him a bag of magic green pellets. James trips and the green pellets are absorbed by the ground.

Something wonderful happens and a peach on the peach tree grows and grows and grows. One night, James ventures inside the peach and meets a host of wonderful mini-beasts who have also grown. They set off on a great adventure.


James and the Giant Peach ideas

The most important thing about Roald Dahl day is to have FUN and  to engage children with great literature and help them to see the wonder of books. Roald Dahl was such an amazing writer and his books speak to children.

In my class I work with the chosen book for the first two weeks of the Autumn term. I have planned a set of reading and writing tasks for the children to ensure that we are familiar with the book. We will think about the characters of Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker and dream up our own horrible new Aunt.

In another session, we will make up magic potions, and write diary entries as James and his Aunts. There are lots of great opportunities for drama from the book, we will write and perform our own play scripts based on our reading. There are great factual writing activities that you could undertake too – mini beast fact files or top trumps cards would be great fun.


 How can you celebrate Roald Dahl Day?

inflatable suit violet beauregardeAt our school we always have a Roald Dahl dress up day. This is a picture of me last year dressed as Violet Beauregarde from Charlie and the Chocolate factory. On the same day, John dressed in an orange inflatable suit as The Giant Peach – so I think that my costume is all sorted for this year!

I will post a picture on my social media channels when I am wearing it. 😉

There is a Roald Dahl charity, for children with rare illnesses, to provide nurses to support them. If your school wishes to support this charity, then you could make dressing up a sponsored event. Here is a link to the information video from the Roald Dahl website:


Costumes for Roald Dahl Day.

You will find ideas for great costumes. It is important to remember though, that for some children, dressing up is very stressful. I always send out suggestions for costumes that are cheap and easy to sort.

For boys who don’t like to dress up, they can come as Charlie Bucket, George, James or Danny Champion of the World – they just need wellies. Girls can dress as Matilda, the girl from the Magic Finger or Sophie from the BFG easily or again any of the characters above.

For more ideas you can look at the Roald Dahl website. Here you can download a party pack with invitations and fun ideas for the day, including crafts to make.

What can parents do to support Roald Dahl Day?

glow worm

On the weekend 8-9 September, parents could take their children to visit the Natural History Museum, in London,  which is having a great James and the Giant Peach weekend in collaboration with the Roald Dahl website. Information is available on Roald

I am sure that children will be very engaged in the activities and they will have lots of opportunities to learn about mini-beasts. If you have a mini-beasts topic, then this would link superbly with the book. Roald Dahl day is a great springboard for lots of great creative ideas.

grasshopper Puffin Virtually Live for Roald Dahl Day.

Every year on Roald Dahl day there is a Puffin Virtually Live show. This is a show which is broadcast from 2-2.30 on the Puffin Virtually Live website, which has great authors and illustrators talking about their craft. The programmes are fun and interactive.

In previous years we have taken part in a draw-along with Quentin Blake and a sing-along with the cast of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in the West End. We send in comments on Twitter and have a great time. These are usually accompanied by a work book for the session.

What activities are there for Roald Dahl Day?

The site runs other shows during the year. You need to register your school to watch live on the day. This year you can  find out how awesome authors like Adrian Edmondson were inspired by Roald Dahl’s writing and prepare to be astonished by treasures from the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre.  You mustn’t forget your pencils and paper for the Dahlicious draw-along! To register visit the Puffin Virtually live website by clicking the link below:

Where can I find other ideas for Roald Dahl Day?

There are lots of great resources online. Roald Dahl is such a well-loved writer. I have pulled together some great pins and put them together on a James and the Giant Peach board on my Pinterest page. These are great if, like me, you are more of a visual person.

Check out the board :

What did you do for Roald Dahl Day?


I would love to know if you use any of these ideas. What did you do in your class, or with your children? What did you dress as? Leave me a comment or drop me an email at

Have a fantastic day.

The Made It Mum xx

If you enjoyed this blog post, you might like to see my Summer Reading Challenge with a free download:

summer reading challenge

reading unlocks worlds
Made it - classroom

Summer Reading Challenge

What is the Summer Reading Challenge?

Why should your children do the Summer Reading Challenge? We all know how important it is for our children to read, and that it is the cornerstone of their education. Reading can unlock amazing worlds and experiences. It expands our horizons and increases our vocabulary. Sometimes though, it can be hard to make children see the value of reading.

In our school, we talk about the fact that reading is our Superpower. The children love reading and are very engaged. So how do we get this from our children?

We work hard to encourage the children to read a wide range of genres by using a series of book badges for each year group. I will explain how we organise this in a later post. We talk about books that we have enjoyed and suggest books for each other. The adults in school talk about books and reading with a real passion. We also have book-related events over the year: Roald Dahl Day, World Book Day and we have a Book Week in school the week before the Christmas holidays. My favourite day is bedtime story day when we read our favourite bed time stories, come to school in our pyjamas and drink hot chocolate.

We know that we need to keep the children reading even when they are not at school – this is where the Summer Reading Challenge comes in.

What are reading challenges?

We encourage the children to read in the ‘Big Holidays’, so any time that the children are off school for more than a week – Christmas, Easter and the Summer – we set a fun reading challenge. The children are asked to read at least ten times during the holidays by undertaking a series of fun challenges. In the Summer Reading Challenge, for instance, they might read in shades or read on a beach. Our children enjoy making up their own challenges.

This idea of Reading Challenges has really taken off in our school. The whole school take the Challenges and complete them. We have an in-school reward system, and there is also usually a tasty treat involved too. With the Summer Reading Challenge, this is an ice-cream or lolly as a special treat.

Is the Summer Reading Challenge just for use by schools?

The Summer Reading Challenge is a fantastic way of encouraging children to read and see the excitement and rewards that reading brings. We want this as teachers, but as a parent of three, I know that we want that for our own children too.

Phil and I are avid readers. It is important to model good reading behaviours to our children at home. We read all the time, but not always books. We read books, recipes, online blogs, instructions, comics. Downloading and using the Summer Reading Challenge as a parent will help to give your child a purpose for their reading. When they have completed the task, you can choose an appropriate reward for your child.

Click the picture below for a FREE copy of our Summer Reading Challenge.

summer reading challenge

How do children complete the Summer Reading Challenge?

For the Summer Reading Challenge the children choose challenges on scoops of ice cream. When they have completed a challenge, they cut it out and stick it on one of the 5 ice cream cones on their sheet. When they have completed 10 challenges, they have completed the task. They can decorate their ice creams with brightly coloured sprinkles and other toppings. You choose a reward for your child.

My teaching resource shops.

If you would like to look at more of my teaching resources, including the other Reading Challenges, they are available for download in my TES – The Tiki Teacher Shop. Click the picture on the left to visit. If you are in America, I also have a Teachers Pay Teachers Shop that I would love you to browse. 😉 Click the picture on the right.

the tiki teacher   the tiki teacher

TES                                       TPT

  I really hope that you give the Summer Reading Challenge a go, and would love to know how you get on.

Please leave a comment – Which challenge was the most fun? Did you make up some great challenges of your own? What did you use as a reward? You see, I am incredibly nosy!

Have a great time reading.

The Made It Mum xx