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Book status: The book for this planning sequence is currently reprinting or out of print and therefore not in stock at most booksellers. If you do not already own the book, we would recommend this planning sequence as an alternative:

Alternative sequence

A Home Learning Branch for Boy in the Tower


KS: Upper KS2

Year Group: Year 6

Author(s): Polly Ho Yen

This is a Home Learning Branch for Boy in the Tower.  These branches are designed to support home learners to access literature-based learning using a selection of books we love from the Literary Curriculum.  They include purposeful writing suggestions, links to the wider curriculum so that texts can be used across other subjects, key questions as well as spelling or phonics investigations.

A Planning Sequence is available for Boy in the Tower.

Planning Sequence Overview:


Journalistic writing, formal letters, non-chronological reports

Main Outcome:

Own version narrative (past and present tense)


15 sessions, 3 weeks

Overview and Outcomes:

This is a three-week planning sequence based upon Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen. Children will learn and revise many of the key grammar requirements of Y6 and have opportunity to apply them within short and longer written outcomes.

Synopsis of Text:

When they first arrived, they came quietly and stealthily as if they tip-toed into the world when we were all looking the other way.

Ade loves living at the top of a tower block. From his window, he feels like he can see the whole world stretching out beneath him.

His mum doesn’t really like looking outside – but it’s going outside that she hates.

She’s happier sleeping all day inside their tower, where it’s safe.

But one day, other tower blocks on the estate start falling down around them and strange, menacing plants begin to appear.

Now their tower isn’t safe anymore. Ade and his mum are trapped and there’s no way out . . .


Dystopia, post-apocolyptic, survival

View Boy in the Tower Planning Sequence

A Spelling Seed is available for Boy in the Tower.

Spelling Seed Overview:


This is a three-session spelling seed for the book Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen.  Below is the coverage from Appendix 1 of the National Curriculum 2014.

Spelling Seeds have been designed to complement the Literary Curriculum by providing weekly, contextualised sequences of sessions for the teaching of spelling that include open-ended investigations and opportunities to practise and apply within meaningful and purposeful contexts, linked (where relevant) to other areas of the curriculum and a suggestion of how to extend the investigation into home learning.

Spelling Seeds work alongside the texts within the Literary Curriculum and, as such, will also reflect the suggested number of weeks spent on a text, as well.


Word List Words

disastrous, explanation, mischievous, vegetable, variety

Spelling Rules and Patterns

Endings which sound like /ʃəs/ spelt –cious or –tious

Words ending in –able and –ible, ably and –ibly

View Boy in the Tower Spelling Seed
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