About this book

Title: The paper dolls
Author: Julia Donaldson
Illustrator: Rebecca Cobb
Publisher: Macmillan
Recommended age: 3-8 years

You can find it here

What is this book great for?

  • Reviewing family
  • Learning about dangerous situations
  • Working on togetherness and teamwork
  • Tackling the idea of loss


A lovely string of five dolls and a little girl live wonderful adventures together. Although danger is all around with dinosaurs, tigers and crocodiles trying to eat them, they always find a way to get rid of them with their happy song:

“You can’t catch us. Oh no no no!
We’re holding hands and we won’t let go.
We’re Ticky and Tacky and Jackie the Backie
And Jim with two noses and Jo with the Bow.”

However, another little boy, does what no danger has done before: he snips them. You may think that they are gone, but they have simply travelled to the memory of the little girl and stay there, forever.
An interesting way to introduce children to the idea of loss with this magic story and its beautiful illustrations.

Do you want to read this story with me?

Teaching activities

PAPER DOLLS ENEMIES-In the story, the paper dolls live adventures full of danger in every corner. Can you identify the enemies of the paper dolls? Circle the animals that tried to eat them and cross out those that didn’t.
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WORDSEARCH- Ticky, Tacky, Jackie the backie, Jim with two noses and Jo with the bow are our protagonists. Will you find their names in this wordsearch?
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DRESS UP YOUR PAPER DOLLS- Time to design wonderful looks for your own paper dolls. You will find a girl and a boy template.
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Take me to the resource (girl)

WHAT IS IN YOUR MEMORY- The paper dolls travelled to the girl’s memory, with many other sweet memories. What do you keep in that special place? Draw your favourite memories in this worksheet.
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CUTTING SKILLS- Time to create your own paper dolls as you practise your artistic and cutting skills. You can also name your new special friends.
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