Wild Pa Learning Time for Libraries and Playgroups

Resource type: 
Learning Time



Wild Pa - Learning Time for Libraries and Playgroups

by Claire Saxby and Connah Brecon

Wild Pa is about a young boy and his wild Pa. All of the normal things Pa doesn’t do and all the wild things he does are explored in this delightful book. It details the wonderful relationship between a grandfather (Pa) and his grandson. The clever rhymes will have your toddler giggling at the silly and wild things Pa gets up to.

Rhyming stories are a great way for children to hear different words and begin to learn about the patterns and sounds different words make. The gentle flow of this book makes it easy to repeat so children can remember all the rhyming combinations.


Before Reading

This book is about a Wild Pa and all of the crazy and wild things he and his grandson get up to. Ask the children if they visit their Pa or another special family member. Ask them what things they do together and how they feel when they do those things. In this story Pa is another name for Grandfather. Do they have a different name for their grandfather such as Grandad, Opa, Nonno, Poppy etc? What about other family members?
Talk about what it means to be ‘wild’. Explore the front cover, what are the characters doing? Give toddlers plenty of time to respond. If they don’t know the answer that’s ok, perhaps come back to the cover after sharing the story together.
Encourage parents to make sure the children can see the book if there is only one copy. This story is quite short, has fantastic rhyme and rhythm and bold and whacky illustrations – all which will entertain toddlers and sustain their interest.

During Reading

Emphasise the rhyming words in the book and focus on the more difficult words, even repeating them a few times before moving on. Encourage toddlers to join in with the repeated phrase “my Pa is a Wild Pa!” Point to the words as you say them, this will act as a visual cue for children when its their time to join in.
Use your facial expressions and tone to keep toddlers interested. Consider asking the children if they have done any of the wild things that Pa does in the story.
Reassure parents that it is okay if their child won’t sit still to listen to the story, toddlers need to move and be active. Encourage parents to keep reading when at home if their toddler moves away as this isn’t necessarily a sign of disinterest, otherwise it is okay to stop reading and come back to it at a later time.

After Reading

Reading stories about fun and adventure can give children wonderful ideas to extend their play in the future. Ask the children if they remember what wild things Pa did in the book. Ask them to share something wild they once did. This book is great for a child’s imagination and they will undoubtedly be keen to play after hearing this story.

Key Message for Parents - Children learn through being engaged and doing

Story time is a great opportunity to inform parents on the importance of play and explain that through play children can be curious, creative, talk and learn in a fun and safe environment. Play is critical to children’s social, emotional and intellectual development. Sharing stories is a great way to engage children and capture their attention and to extend into play.
Some ideas to share with parents might include:

  • Encourage them to play with their child, following their lead and interacting with them
  • Read short books with toddlers who are often on the go
  • Use rhyme and repetition as they start to develop a wider vocabulary
  • Introduce open ended objects during play time to encourage imagination. A cardboard box for example can be a car, rocket ship, cave etc.


Learning Outcomes – Outcome 1: Children have a strong sense of identity

Children’s identity is shaped by their experiences. They will learn about themselves and their identity based on their interactions and the responses they receive. Relationships help child develop a sense of belonging. When children feel safe, secure and supported they are able to be their true self.
We can support children to develop their identity by:

  • Encouraging relationships and communication with many people. Story time can offer time for children to socialise and interact with other adults as well as children
  • Allowing plenty of play opportunities for children to test out their ideas and interact with other children
  • Encouraging children to express themselves and accept their choices
  • Communicate with and encourage babies when they show signs of communication.


For full Activity Time please download the attached PDF

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