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Rob Biddulph
Harper Collins
Age 3-7 years

Gigantic is a young whale who despite his name is very tiny. His big brother Titan makes fun of him and says Gigantic should play with the smaller sea creatures. Gigantic does just that; having lots of fun with his new friend Myrtle the Turtle. One day Titan’s friends Hulk and Colossus notice Gigantic’s impressive tail spins. Titan is jealous and determined to show that anything his brother can do he can do better. Despite warnings that the water is too shallow Titan goes ahead and quickly becomes grounded. It is up to Gigantic and his team of small sea creatures to try and save the day.

This is a delightful story about sibling rivalry and love. It shows that it is possible to make a difference even if you are small and it is the size of your heart that is most important.

Stunningly illustrated and designed with rich colour there is lots to spot in the detailed undersea world. The rhyming text invites children to join in once familiar with the story.

Choose from the suggestions below according to your child’s age and experience

Watch a trailer


Share the story

Read aloud
Read the story aloud to your child allowing time to look at the beautiful illustrations and talk about what. Is happening when your child wants to.

Join in
When children become familiar with the story they could join in with the reading, for example you could leave gaps at the end of sentences and children could supply the rhyming words.

Talk about the story

Talk about the undersea world and all the creatures you can see in the illustrations.
The artwork is beautiful – talk about your favourite pages.
Talk about any unfamiliar vocabulary in the story eg pod, beached or tail spin
Think of all the words for big that you can (you could start with the names for Gigantic’s brothers.  Then try to find words for small too again you could start with the ones in the book.
What might you tell someone else about this book?

Things to make and do

Have fun with writing words
Look at the way the word gigantic is written on the title page. Write the word GIGANTIC very big and the word TINY very small. Play with writing more words so that the way you write them reflects their meaning eg wide, narrow, stretch, squash …

Draw characters from the story
Give your child paper and pens or colouring pencils to draw Gigantic and Myrtle – before you start take a look at this video and follow Rob Biddulph’s instructions.

Make an underwater world
Use a shoe box or other small cardboard box. Cut down the two sides of one face to make a flap. Decorate the sides and base of the box with paint or coloured paper in ocean blues or greens, you could add drawings of reeds anemones and urchins. Make a collection of colourful fish and under sea creatures using thin card and felt tip pens. Cut them out then make a hole in each and tie a string or cotton through the hole. Suspend the strings across the top of the box. Your child could then suspend their sea creatures from the strings.

Make a poster
On a large sheet of paper suggest your child makes a poster about whales. In the middle they could draw a gigantic (!) picture of a whale and around the outside write some facts about it – if your child is not yet confident about writing you could help or scribe their ideas for them. See below for links to information about whales.

Find out more

Find out more about whales
What do you already know about whales? What would you like to find out? Talk about these questions together then take a look at a video or visit your local library to find books about whales.

Find out more about author/illustrator Rob Biddulph
Take a look at his website. Read more picture books by Rob Biddulph, titles include:
Blown Away
Odd Dog Out

Find out more about life under the sea
Visit an aquarium or sea life centre if there is one in your locality. If not take a virtual tour of an aquarium Talk about the creatures you see.

Read another story about a beached whale here