The Flying Cat

story by Mike Craig , illustrated by Tohby Riddle

Learning intention: 

I am learning to experiment with different stylistic features from other authors so that I can develop further creativity in my writing. 


Success criteria: 

  • I can locate repeated features in the story. 
  • I can come up with my own idea that relates to the text. 
  • I can apply my idea to the style the author has used in the text. 


Essential knowledge: 

More information about applying our own ideas to elements and features of another author’s text can be found in the English Textual Concepts video Style. 


After reading the story, discuss the use of stylistic features in storytelling. Explain that these are the ways we choose to use vocabulary, structure and literary devices such as metaphors, or onomatopoeia in our writing in a repetitive way. Some familiar examples of stylistic features may include: 

  • The use of rhyme and repetition (among many other features) in Dr Seuss books. 
  • The use of sketches and different fonts in the Tom Gates series. 
  • The repetition of the word ‘sheep’ in Where is the Green Sheep by Mem Fox. 


Ask students if they notice the use of any stylistic features in the story. Their answer should relate to the repetition of Mr Fahmy’s plans, each using a different letter of the alphabet. Follow up by asking if they can recall the different plans Mr Fahmy used to try to get Strife out of the tree. These should include: 

Plan M – Bowl of milk 

Plan F – Big piece of fish 

Plan C – Canary in a cage 

Plan L – Ladder against the tree 

Plan T – Tying a rope to his tow truck 


Discuss the merit in each of these plans and why Mr Fahmy thought they might work. Ask students to think of other situations animals can get themselves into that we may need to be prepared for. Suggestions may include: 

  • A dog digging under the fence and escaping from the backyard. 
  • A bird hurting its wing and falling from a tree. 
  • A lizard hiding under the deck and not coming out. 

Tell students they are to work with a partner to come up with a scenario and create different plans to deal with it using letters of the alphabet like Mr Fahmy did. Set a challenge to use as many letters as possible. Perhaps the student that comes up with the most can even win a prize such as choosing a song at the end of the day!