A story-time workshop: Out of the Egg (helping and forgiveness)

A story-time workshop is a little more than reading a story, and it is a wonderful way to bring books to life and help children fall in love with the wonder of reading.

My Little Bookcase was contacted to help put a workshop together for 40 five year old children. The children were thoroughly engaged with the story and activities.

This workshop involves four stages:

  • Tuning In: Capturing the child’s interest and attention so they can gain as much from the story as possible
  • Reading the story
  • Making Connections: Providing the child with an experience that can help them relate to the story
  • Book-chatting: A chance to talk about the story, characters and messages in the book

The stages can take place in one session or they can take place over a number of days,depending on the age of the child. I hope you can find a way to incorporate some of these activities in your home, as this is one very special book to share with your children.


This workshop is inspired by:

Out of the Egg, written and illustrated by Tina Matthews (Published by Walker Books)

Read details about the book here

TUNING IN (Before Reading)

1. Make cat, rat and pig ear headbands

2. Sing ‘Old McDonald had a Farm’ introducing each of the characters in the story (hen, cat, rat and pig). Wear your animal ears for added enjoyment.

3. Take a Picture Walk through the book: Look at each of the pictures without reading the story. Take in the details in the background and talk about the style of the artwork and the timing and development of the colours used.


1. Invite your children to help you read the story. While wearing their animal ears, the children can say the words ‘Not I’ when their characters speak in the story. For a wonderful story-time, get a group of children together.


1. Plant your own seeds. Buy your seeds and follow the instructions on the pack. You could plant your seeds:

  • In the garden
  • In a pot

2. Sing some songs, poems or rhymes about planting seeds. Here are a few I particularly like:

My Garden (Fingerplay)- Author Unknown, sourced from Pre-school Education

This is my garden (Hold out hand, palm faced up)

I’ll rake it with care (Use three fingers to stroke along the palm of outstretched hand)

And then some flower seeds I’ll plant there (Pretend to sprinkle seeds into palm)

The sun will shine (Stretch hands above head)

And the rain will fall (Wiggle fingers)

And my garden will blossom,

and grow straight and tall (Stretch all fingers tall)

Seeds (Sung to ‘Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star)- Author unknown, sourced from Pre-school Education

Dig a hole deep in the ground

Spread some tiny seeds around

Pat them down – so they will keep

They are lying fast asleep

Rain will help the seeds to grow

Sunshine keeps them warm I know

A Little Seed  (sung to the tune of ‘I’m a Little Teapot’)- Author Unknown, sourced from Pre-school Education

Here’s a little seed in the dark, dark ground.

Out comes the warm sun, yellow and round.

Down comes the rain, wet and slow.

Up comes the little seed, grow, grow, grow!

Planting Poem- Author Unknown, source from Pre-school Education

I took a little seed one day

About a month ago

I put it in a pot of dirt

In hopes that it would grow

I poured a little water

To make the soil just right

I set the pot upon the sill

Where the sun would give it light

I checked the pot most every day,

And turned it once or twice

With a little care and water

I helped it grow so nice

BOOK-CHATTING (During or After Reading)

Out of the Egg covers a variety of themes, so there are many questions that could be asked. The questions below focus on helping others, forgiveness and planting seeds.

Literal Questions:

  • What did the cat, rat and pig do when they were asked to help?
  • What did the hen give the little animals at the end of the story?

Inferential Questions:

  • Why do you think the animals didn’t want to help the hen?
  • How do you look after a seed that has been planted?
  • Why was the little chick nice to the other animals?

Application Questions:

  • Have you ever said ‘No’ to someone?
  • Have you ever had to do something on your own? How did it feel?

Analysis and Evaluation Questions:

  • What would you do if you were the hen and no-one helped you?
  • What would you do with the seed if the hen gave it to you?
  • How could the other animals have helped the hen?

Wondering what these types of questions are? Find out more here, as part of our series on ‘Book-chatting’
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A story-time workshop: Out of the Egg (helping and forgiveness)


  1. Love the egg shell idea, will certainly be trying that out.

    Looks like a really good book, will have to hunt around for it, thans for the info

    • Glad you like it Claire. I’m sure you can tell that I love it. I’ve seen it in most independent bookstores around Melbourne (not sure where you are). I haven’t seen it in Borders though. Make sure you enter our giveaway. You could win a copy plus a matching plush toy

  2. Love these ideas, Jackie! And the book looks and sounds really cute.

  3. This unit study is so sweet. I just love it. I hope you’ll consider sharing it at Look What We Did. -Savannah http://hammocktracks.com/buttons/

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A story-time workshop: Out of the Egg (helping and forgiveness)

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