Everybody’s Welcome tells the story of a mouse who builds a house, providing a home for other woodland animals with nowhere to live. Sharing this story is a great way to start talking about how important it is to help those in need, whether it be a friend with a problem, someone you have just met, or a family immigrating from another country.
Watch the story
- As you are reading or watching the story together, encourage your child to join in the repeated phrase ‘everybody’s welcome’.
- Emphasise the rhyming words at the end of each line and see if your child can fill in the missing word, for example ‘you can stick with me… just you wait and (see)’.
- Pause or stop reading the story as the mouse meets a new animal and ask “What will happen next?” or “What will the mouse say to the animal?”
- Talk about why each of the animals have had to leave their homes. Discuss how kind the mouse is and how the mouse makes sure to welcome everyone, ‘wherever they may come from, whether near or far’. Talk about how we can welcome people if they are new to the area, including if they have moved from another country.
After you have finished the story, try these house-themed activities together:
- Make a house or den: Make your own house to welcome everyone! You could build a big house using cardboard boxes, or create a den under a table using pillows and blankets.
- Invite some visitors: Use some toy animals, puppets or pictures of animals and invite them to come into your house or den. Think about how to make them feel welcome, for example by giving them somewhere to sit. You could also invite the other people that you live with.
- Action song: Sing this song called Peter Hammers, which is about using a hammer to build. Try out the actions that go along with the song.
- Create a welcome sign: Make a welcome sign or picture to show that everybody is welcome in the house or den that you have made. Look at the picture on the front cover and talk about what the mouse is doing to show that the animals are welcome (smiling, with arms stretched out). Can you draw yourself in the same way?
For older children
Draw a picture of the house or den that you have made and add some labels. You could draw and label yourself welcoming everybody. Add some animals, label them and show which part of the house they are helping to build.