E-friends 4 Ever

story by Wendy Graham , illustrated by Queenie Chan

Learning intention:

I am learning to use appropriate language in informal spoken texts so that I can share and extend ideas and information.


Success criteria:

  • I can compose and present an informal spoken text.
  • I can use imagery to enhance my ideas.
  • I can use appropriate language to share and extend ideas.


Essential knowledge:               

Information about imagery and symbolism can be found in the English Textual Concepts video Connotation, Imagery and Symbolism.


Focus question: How do comparisons help us understand and create imagery?


After reading E-friends 4 Eva, ask students to find evidence in the text that Dallas and Stavros are becoming friends. Answers include the sign-off changing to “your friend”, sharing vulnerable times where they each got into trouble, Stavros telling Dallas about being sick on the Ferris wheel, Stavros telling Dallas they’re friends, the two planning to meet up, Dallas sending Stavros a photograph, Stavros inviting Dallas to call him by his nickname Steve.


Ask students how language changes when you become closer friends with someone. Encourage them to think about meeting a new student for the first time compared to talking to a best friend. Students might suggest that with close friends they have inside jokes, are more casual/informal and use more colloquial and slang terms.


Explain that students are to compose a text to either Stavros or Dallas as if they are already good friends. Rather than an email format, the text will be spoken like a voice memo. If available, students can use audio recording devices to record their message. Ask students to think about what kind of greeting they would give a good friend, such as “Hey Dallas” or “What’s up, Steve?”


Students are to explain to Dallas or Stavros what’s happening in their daily lives, similar to the emails exchanged in the story. Encourage students to use imagery such as similes and metaphors in their message. For inspiration, have them analyse imagery used in E-friends 4 Eva:


  • From my window I see skyscrapers and the grey river that carves its path through the suburbs like moving lava.
  • It [the rainforest] can be dark because of the tall trees with thick vines twisting up the trunks.
  • Yesterday I dragged myself out of bed and made popcorn and I forgot to put the lid on the pot. Bang! Bang! Like fireworks, hitting the ceiling.
  • It [the lyrebird] had a harp-shaped tail that quivered like a cobweb in the wind.

The can also watch the English Textual Concepts video Connotation, Imagery and Symbolism.

Students present their talks or audio recordings in small groups.


Close Reading Lesson: