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Here come the aliens!

here come the aliensColin McNaughton
Age 3-7

This is a humorous story with striking illustrations. It tells the story of an imminent alien invasion abandoned at the eleventh hour when the invaders discover how shocking and scary human life, in the form of young children, can be. This book has a very strong rhythm, rhyming language and a chorus which will your child to join in with the reading when you read the story together.

Share the book

Read aloud

Read the story aloud, pausing after the first double page with the alien spaceships on route for Earth. What do children think will happen in the story? Continue reading pausing to talk about what is happening in the story and pictures when your child wants to.

Join in
When you re read the story encourage your child to join in with the chorus ‘The aliens are coming’. They might like to complete the rhymes as well eg:

‘They’ve boldly been where we’ve not been;
They are blue and purple and sickly ……….’

Talk about the book
Talk about the aliens together. Children might like to choose which is their favourite, which they think is the scariest or the ugliest.

Talk about the differences between the aliens (eg number of eyes). Look at the picture of children at the end of the book are they different to each other too? You might also like to talk about your child and their friends and think about the ways everyone is individual and different.

Why do children think the  aliens were scared of the picture of children?

Spot the rhymes
Look for rhyming words together and talk about what is the same and different about them eg munch and lunch with most letters the same and just one different.

Things to make and do

Story play
Using face paints decorate your child’s face ‘blue or purple or sickly green’ like the aliens in the story.  Can your child sound like an alien and make up alien words or squeaks to communicate with you.

Create a makeshift alien spaceship out of cardboard or blankets
over a couple of chairs so that your child can imagine being an alien on the way to earth.

Make a  book of aliens
Make a simple zig zag book so that your child can draw pictures of aliens on each page making up a name for each one. Children could draw the aliens in the book or design some of their own.

Make an alien model
Give children brightly coloured play dough or plasticine to make their own alien model.  Pipe cleaners could be added for arms or antennae and dried pea for eyes. Children could make up a name for their alien.

Write a note to the people of Earth
Children could imagine they are the  alien commander and write a message to Earth to say they are about to invade.

Find out more

Find out more about Colin McNaughton and his books here

Titles include:

We’re off to look for aliens



Have you seen who’s just moved in next door to us?

Find out about aliens. Do aliens exist? Talk together about living things on Earth and what we need to be alive (eg to breathe and grow). Investigate to see what scientists think about alien life on other planets.