Lesson Plans based on DemiChat and the Kent Street Mystery can be found below.

Also, a 32 page e-booklet entitled "Teachers' Companion" is available free to schools who have purchased multiple copies of the novel DemiChat and the Kent Street Mystery from the author. Lessons are across Language, Literature and Literacy and these are the topics:

  • Language
    • Punctuation - apostrophes
    • Clauses and conjunctions
    • Personal pronouns
    • Powerful verbs, adverbs and adjectives
  • Literature
    • How witers create the novel's world through language
    • Connections about the experiences of characters and children's own experiences
    • Creating imaginary literary texts based on the way in which living things interact with other living things
    • Engaging with Texts  - Ideas / Themes
    • Use of figurative language: simies and metaphors
  • Literacy
    • Comprehension (2 questions for each of Literal, Inferential and Analysis per chapter)
    • Cross -curricular knowledge to interpret infographics
    • Organising Information - Book Review

Two additional colour illustrations by illustrator Peter "Zane" Haywood are included in the Teachers' Companion based upon the novel's theme of Teamwork. Email toni.brisland@gmail.com if you would like a copy.

 

Lesson Plans (outcomes listed for Stage 3 of the NSW Board of Studies Curriculum or equivalent)
 
1. Lesson Plan - Key Learning Area
English / Reading / Context and Text
 
Outcome:
RS 3.7 Critically analyses techniques used by writers to position the reader in various ways.
 
For Discussion –
What worlds does the writer of ‘DemiChat and the Kent Street Mystery’ create?
 
  • What was the world that DemiChat came from? (pages 12 to 13)
  • What was the world that Jake and Flannery knew in the Police Force (Chapter 1)?
  • What three capital cities do DemiChat and Flannery visit?
  • What words are used to decribe how different these cities are from each other?
  • Why do you think the writer uses French words sometimes and Italian words sometimes?
 
Research –
What are some of the famous monuments in any one of these cities? Why are they famous?
 
Find –
A picture of any one of these cities.
 
Write -
Create a Mind Map of describing words (adjectives) for a picture of any one of these cities.
 

2. Lesson Plan - Key Learning Area           

Science and Technology / Content / Living Things

  

Outcome
LTS 3.3 Identifies, describes and evaluates the interactions between living things and their effects on the environment.                                  
  1. Brainstorm all the ways people interact with animals (in the world of work, as pets, as a food source, to rehabilitate the sick, as companions for the elderly, as recreational entertainment (in zoos), for educational purposes). Look at the Kids Zone and/or Demi’s Friends Animal Lovers subpages of this website for some links to animal websites.
  2. Ask class members to bring in a photo of their pets and have a 'Show and Tell'.
  3. Look at the human role in improving the treatment of animals in Australia: the RSPCA has an educational resource to teach children of all ages about animals with games, brain teasers, photos, crazy videos and more. Go the World of Animal Welfare
  4. Also, an RSPCA Educational Officer will visit your school and conduct group educational sessions.

 

3. Lesson Plan - Key Learning Area
Human Society and Its Environment / Cultures / Cultural Diversity
 
Outcome
CUS 3.4 Examines how cultures change through interactions with other cultures and the environment.
 
Language:
On page vi of DemiChat and the Kent Street Mystery’  there are some French and Italian words that appear in the text with their translation and pronunciation. 
 
  1. Have fun by asking the class to pronounce the different words.
  2. Ask the class: Who speaks another language other than English, French and Italian? Can they translate the words on page vi into another language for the class?
 
Nationality:
The animal characters Jake and Lord Flannery are English as is the human Inspector Robert Cooper; Inspector Alessandra Bambini is Italian (as is the Capella gang); O’Malley is Irish and DemiChat is French.
 
  1. Discuss some of the characteristics usually associated with these different nationalities.
  2. How do the characters display these characteristics? What do they say or do?
  3. Ask each class member to discuss a characteristic of one of the characters and how that character tries to assimilate with another character with whom they are interacting, for example: 
    • (1) Flannery tries to call DemiChat 'Mademosiselle Le Chat'. Why?  
    • (2) DemiChat tells Flannery to call her 'Demi'. Why? (pages 10 -11)

Culture:

  1. Ask each class member to discuss a characteristic of the culture of their parents and their cultural background. Ask them to think about how this has changed by living in Australia.
  2. Brainstorm – what are the characteristics of an Australian?
 
Food:
The character Lord Flannery likes his Food!
  1. Research the favourite foods of the French and the Italians (for Flannery’s Italian favourites look at page 62)
  2. Look up some recipes on the internet OR ask class members to bring in a recipe and talk about it.
  3. Ask each class member to tell the class about or draw their favourite food
 
Cities:
The action of the novel takes place in London, Paris and Rome.
  • Look at a map of the world:
    • The capital cities of London, Paris and Rome are in what countries?
    • How far are these countries from each other?
    • How far are they from Australia?
    • Find a picture (or print one from the internet) of these cities and ask the class what things look the same and what things look different.
    • Find a monumental site for each e.g. the Tower of London, Eiffel Tower, Colosseum.
      • What was it used for when it was first constructed?
      • What is it used for now?
      • Draw it.
      • Ask the class who has travelled to any of these places? Have their parents? Can they bring in photos?
 
 
4.Lesson Plan - Key Learning Area
Mathematics / Whole Numbers / Addition
 
Outcome
NS3.2 Selects and applies appropriate strategis for addition and subtraction with counting numbers of any size.
 
(This table also appears in the Zids Only Zone of this website)
 
A Sherlock Holmes Style Code!
 
Substitute numbers for letters to decipher this message:
 
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
 
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
 
S
T
U
V
W
X
Y
Z
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
 
Now,
  1. Code this message, then
  2. Add up the numbers.
“beagles”

 

 

 

 

Ask the Author a Question by email to toni.brisland@gmail.com

 
  • 'DemiChat' is on the NSW Premier's Reading Challenge List for 2012
 

Available from Dennis Jones & Associates, Distributors
www.in2books.com.au