June 11th, 2020

Bookshow at Home with Neal Layton

Wow! It's week 6 of The Children's Bookshow at Home. We are delighted to share this wonderful picture book, The Tree, by the inspiring author and illustrator, Neal Layton. Find out about Neal, and listen to him reading the story before trying out some of the tree-related activities below. You can sign up to our newsletter here, or follow us on twitter @ChildrensBkShow. Our activities should appeal to all kinds of readers, writers and artists, so everyone can get involved.


Book of the Week: The Tree

A tree can be all kinds of different homes - for birds, for animals, and for people! When a family decide to use a magnificent green fir tree as their new house, at first they forget to think about all the wildlife already living there. We love this book for its engaging, sensitive and funny illustrations, and because it encourages the reader to think about sharing, wildlife, and looking after the environment.


Author in focus

When Neal was growing up he spent much of his time making homemade catapults and drawing pictures. Now he has a studio: a room in his house where he can make a mess. The walls are covered with pictures, drawings, scribbles, badges, photos, posters, packaging and anything else that he finds inspiring.

Neal's other books include Stanley's Stick (written by John Hegley), A Planet Full of Plastic and Oscar and Arabella.


Watch Neal reading you The Tree


Neal Activities!

Write a Tree Poem

Or a 'Poetree'! Create a shape poem about trees. You could use the story as inspiration and think about the many animals who make their home in a tree. Or you can think about what makes trees so special in our environment.

Make a Tree Collage

Collect some fallen twigs and create a tree picture with them. If you have some, add screwed up tissue paper for leaves and/or blossom. PVA glue works best for sticking the twigs to the card or paper.

Tree Walk

Take a walk and look out for trees growing near your home. You could draw them, take a photograph or collect a fallen leaf. The Woodland Trust has a simple guide to identifying different kinds of trees.

If you live in London you can create your own tour of local trees on the Tree Talk website.

We'd love to see your Poetrees, tree collages and tree walk pictures. To send us your work to display in our gallery use the link below, or upload to twitter with the hashtag #BookshowAtHome. You might also like to send us a video of you reading your poem!

Email us your work for our gallery

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