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Fun Story Time Ideas for Kids: Act It Out – The Gruffalo

Fun Storytime Ideas for Kids: Narrating and acting out books

Acting books out is one of my favorite ways to make story time extra fun for kids – and it’s a great way to bring books to life! So when the people from The Gruffalo – one of my all-time favorite children’s books – offered me the chance to host a review/giveaway for my readers, I knew exactly what products of theirs I wanted to feature.

We already had a copy of the book, so they sent us their Mouse Bean Bag and Gruffalo puppet – and we were all set!

Here is Emma (seven years old) in serious narrator mode:

Narrating and acting out Julia Donaldson's The Gruffalo

And you can see a snippet of Johnny (five years old) and Lily (three years old) acting out the story. We decided not to give away the ending of the book, in case you haven’t read it!

This type of storytelling is a wonderful way for kids to look at the various perspectives of different characters, and it’s fantastic read-aloud practice for Emma! I also think that characters like Mouse and the Gruffalo are wonderful tools for building emotional intelligence. Mouse does a great job of keeping calm and thinking in a high pressure situation, and the Gruffalo also does a good job of listening! He may end up being tricked by the mouse, but I say it’s a better safe than sorry type of situation!

The Gruffalo giveaway

The Gruffalo company was kind enough to offer up a bean bag mouse, Gruffalo puppet, and copy of the book for a US-based reader of this blog so you can do some storytelling of your very own! To enter, just fill in the form below. I will choose a winner on April 15th via random.org:


This giveaway has now ended. Congratulations, Amanda Erickson!

What are some of your favorite ways to explore picture books with your kids?

MaryAnne is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.

34 thoughts on “Fun Story Time Ideas for Kids: Act It Out – The Gruffalo”

  1. Thank you so much! I replied to your email earlier today with my mailing info. So excited! :)

  2. I gave our grandson Matthew two Gruffalo movies for Easter and he absolutely loves them! He would adore having a book and animals to hug!! Thanks so much for offering this giveaway!

  3. My daughter loves to become the character she most closely identifies with and assign the rest of her family their characters. She then refers to everyone in that manner until the next new favorite set of characters come along. Right now Fred is reading McTat her bedtime stories while Socks is typing away on the computer. Julia Donaldson is a huge hit in this house. Last week, Room on the Broom was the hot thing….this week it’s McTat the Musical Cat!

  4. What a great idea! My daughter and I love reading and talking about books together. I think she would really enjoy doing this also.

  5. This is a win-win situation. Children will sit to hear a story if they know that they will get their chance to be players in the story after it is finished. My three year old grandchildren would love this book!

  6. My son recently became obsessed with the Gruffalo, we’ve read it every day for the last two weeks! I know he would love to act out the story with puppets.

  7. My kids would love this! My 4yr old DD loves to re-enact books, movies, tv shows! She’s full of beans and stories!

  8. I love this, and it’s so much fun to see what kind of ways the kids will express the characters using their voices and motions. :)

  9. JC doesn’t care about the words in picture books, so we just flip through and look for things he can name, like birds, cars, trains, and pigs.

  10. We LOVE Julia Donaldson and The Gruffalo! My 3.5 yo son and I often quote it to each other in random conversation. :). We’ve only checked it out from the library… he’d be over the moon for one of his own!

  11. We love the Gruffalo. I agree that the mouse does do a good job at thinking on his feet. J was given the books last year for his birthday and has them memorized. I love hearing him read them. They have a good reading rhythm associated with them.

  12. I love this. I think acting out books is so great, and I loved hearing Emma read the story, it’s so fun for kids to hear other kids, especially their siblings, read aloud. Here’s hoping I win!

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