Planning Sequence Back to List

A Planning Sequence for The Sleeper and the Spindle

£5.00 (inc. VAT)

KS: Upper KS2

Year Group: Year 5

Literary Theme: Legends & Folklore

Author(s): Neil Gaiman


Warning poster, diary entry, dialogue, estate agent’s description, character description, missing narrative

Main Outcome:

Fairytale reworking (prequel or sequel)


17 sessions, 3+ weeks

Overview and Outcomes:

This is a 3+ week planning sequence using an The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell in which children explore and discuss fairytales and how this fairytale subverts the genre. They go on to create a number of varied written outcomes using the text as a starting point including narratives, dialogue, character descriptions, setting descriptions (estate agents’ adverts), and diary entries before using the ideas and authorial devices identified within the text to plan, draft, edit and publish their own subverted fairytale using the idea of The Queen and the Glass Coffin to write a sequel.

Synopsis of Text:

A thrillingly reimagined fairy tale from the truly magical combination of author Neil Gaiman and illustrator Chris Riddell - weaving together a sort-of Snow White and an almost Sleeping Beauty with a thread of dark magic, which will hold readers spellbound from start to finish.

On the eve of her wedding, a young queen sets out to rescue a princess from an enchantment. She casts aside her fine wedding clothes, takes her chain mail and her sword and follows her brave dwarf retainers into the tunnels under the mountain towards the sleeping kingdom. This queen will decide her own future - and the princess who needs rescuing is not quite what she seems. Twisting together the familiar and the new, this perfectly delicious, captivating and darkly funny tale shows its creators at the peak of their talents.


Traditional tales, modern fairytales, fairy tales, twisted tales

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