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A Home Learning Branch for The Unforgotten Coat


KS: Upper KS2

Year Group: Year 6

Author(s): Frank Cottrell Boyce

This is a Home Learning Branch for The Unforgotten Coat.  These branches are designed to support home learners to access literature-based learning using a selection of books we love from Writing Roots.  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 Writing Root is available for The Unforgotten Coat.

Writing Root Overview:


Diary entries, explanations (sci experiment), dialogue, non-chronological reports

Main Outcome:

Own version ‘issues and dilemmas’ narrative


15 sessions, 3 weeks

Overview and Outcomes:

Using The Unforgotten Coat by Frank Cottrell Boyce, children will explore the experiences of refugees and the reasons why people have to flee countries to seek asylum. This could be used in conjunction with Refugee Week. Through the Writing Root, children will write extended narratives in the style of a journal, recorded as a series of diary entries.  There are also opportunities to write explanation texts about a science experiment, mirroring the text, as well as non-chronological reports, following research about Mongolia.

Synopsis of Text:

Two refugee brothers from Mongolia are determined to fit in with their Liverpool schoolmates, but bring so much of Mongolia to Bootle that their new friend and guide, Julie, is hard-pressed to know truth from fantasy. Told with the humour, warmth and brilliance of detail which characterizes Frank Cottrell Boyce's writing, readers will be transported from the streets of Liverpool to the steppe of Mongolia.

Text Rationale:

Frank Cottrell-Boyce is a significant children’s author and children may already be familiar with some of his other titles such as Cosmic and Millions.  This poignant story won the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize in 2012 and we chose it for the richness of its offering: from the compelling characterisation and unique dialogue and dialects to the Polaroid photos which help to tell the story.  There are strong links to the themes of migration, movement and belonging and the familiar school setting will help children fully engage with the plights of the characters within. 

Links and Themes:

Migration, immigration, refugees, Mongolia, movement, belonging, family, friendship

Date written: March 2014

View The Unforgotten Coat Writing Root

A Spelling Seed is available for The Unforgotten Coat.

Spelling Seed Overview:


This is a three-session spelling seed for the book The Unforgotten Coat by Frank Cottrell Boyce.  Below is the coverage from Appendix 1 of the National Curriculum 2014.

Spelling Seeds have been designed to complement Writing Roots 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.

There is a Spelling Seed session for every week of the associated Writing Root.


Word List Words

accommodate, bargain, communicate, foreign, identity, individual, language, pronunciation, queue

Spelling Rules and Patterns

Words containing the suffix –ate, –ify, – en

Words with the /i:/ sound spelt ei after c

View The Unforgotten Coat Spelling Seed
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