Andy Shepherd is the author of the immensely popular The Boy Who Grew Dragons series. Since the first book published in 2018, the series has been a firm favourite among children and teachers alike. The stories follow the funny and heart-warming adventures of Tomas, who finds a dragon-growing tree at the bottom of his grandad’s garden. The books have gone down a treat in classrooms, sparking a host of creative projects from imaginative teachers.
The newest book in the series is The Ultimate Guide to Growing Dragons – a companion title to the series that sees Tomas and friends attempting to collate all of their dragon expertise into one handy guidebook. You can order The Ultimate Guide to Growing Dragons online from Amazon or Bookshop.
Author Andy Shepherd stopped by our blog this week to share some of the creative ways the dragon stories have been brought to life in classrooms…
Guest Post: Dragons at School
by Andy Shepherd, author of The Ultimate Guide to Growing Dragons
What happens when you let a dragon into your classroom? Answer: Amazing things!
Before the first dragon flew out in 2018, I put together a Teacher’s Activity Pack. I could see the potential for cross-curricular work with the story, from gardening topics to mythical creatures to caring for animals, our world and each other. I really enjoyed picking my teacher friend’s brains for ideas and tapping into the teacher training I did myself.
But I had no idea back then how much the resources would be used and shared in schools. And what a happy home the dragons would find in classrooms here and abroad.
I’ve been absolutely blown away by the amazing creative work that teachers, librarians, TA’s and the children themselves have done around the books.
With thanks in particular to Ceri Eccles (@TeacherGlitter) who produced a Big Book of Words focusing on the language used in the books and Miss Blundell (MissBlundell98) for her series of lesson plans.
But thank you to EVERYONE who has welcomed the dragons into their school, shared the stories and shared their work with me. It’s an incredible feeling to see what the dragons have inspired.
Since that first Teacher Activity Pack we’ve added more resources, including a free short story to download and a writing challenge video and you can find all of them on my website for FREE!
Head to my site to discover:
· A topic web plus activity ideas relating to each of the books in the series.
· Links to Big Book of Words by @TeacherGlitter
· Lesson plans by @MissBlundell98
· Series of videos by Authorfy covering everything from what inspired me and how I created my dragons to how I injected humour into the story, as well as a reading and the Authorfy scheme of work.
And now you can sing about dragons too! Head over to https://www.fridayafternoonsmusic.co.uk/songs to find 12 original songs based on the books. With music composed by Joanna Lee, lyrics written by me and commissioned by Britten Pears Arts for their Friday Afternoons Programme.
Let your imaginations and your voices soar!
I’ve collected folders of pictures of all the displays and creative work that people have shared which you can see on my website. But here’s just a little taste of that incredible work. From growing their own dragons, to making shoebox nests!
The Ultimate Guide to Growing Dragons written by Andy Shepherd, illustrated by Sara Ogilvie, published by Piccadilly Press releasing 15th September.
The first book in the series, The Boy Who Grew Dragons, is also part of our Recommended Reads for Year 3 booklist.
Many thanks to Andy for swinging by and to the creative primary teachers who shared their pictures.
> Visit our Reading for Pleasure Hub
> Browse our Topic Booklists
> View our printable year group booklists.
> See our Books of the Month.