Alexander’s Outing

Written by Pamela Allen

For ages 3 to 6

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This book is best for:
  • prepositions
  • describing means to a goal
  • identifying obstacles to an action
  • concepts of floating & sinking


Alexander’s Outing follows a duckling who always seems to straggle behind even with his mother’s warning to stay close. Alexander lands himself in a bit of trouble when he falls down a deep dark hole. Lucky for him there is a very kind group of people who make a plan to rescue him. This story emphasises the importance of always listening to the group leader and staying close to the group.

The rhythmic text makes Alexander’s Outing a delight to read aloud. There are many basic concepts that can be targeted in this book, but it is particularly good for working on prepositions. The ducks walk past a bottle tree, through some gates, and along a road. Then little Alexander falls down the hole and the people work together to get him up and out! Although not mentioned explicitly in the text, the illustrations lend themselves to a teaching moment about the concepts of floating and sinking. Alexander’s Outing is also a great choice for targeting the higher level semantic skills, such as describing means to a goal (i.e. how can they get Alexander out of the hole?) and obstacles to an action (e.g. why can’t the man reach Alexander?).

Book Details

Narrative Structure: Complex Episode

Story Plot: Warning Tale

  • animals - birds
  • location - park, city
  • following rules
  • listening

Speech and Language Targets

Speech Sounds:
  • /s/ (sisters, so, sunny, search, set, such, see, sandwich, disappeared, gates, close, arms)
  • /s/ blends (stay, straggle, stopped, still, started, distant, plastic, most, past)
  • adjectives (deep, dark, long, small)
  • conjunctions (and, but, so)
  • modal (could)
  • negative (not)
  • possessive pronoun (his)
  • possessive nouns
  • prepositions
  • present progressive tense
  • regular past tense
  • irregular past tense (e.g. heard, came, knew, rose)
  • subjective pronoun (they)
  • antonyms / opposites (float/sink - from illustrations)
  • explaining means to a goal,
  • identifying obstacles to an action
  • figurative language - simile (like the cork out of a bottle)
  • location (past, through, along, behind, down, up, out)
  • quantity (one, two, all, empty)
  • temporal / time-related (when, then, before, now, until)
  • follow rules
  • listening skills
  • character description
  • time
  • setting
  • weather
  • initiating event
  • plans
  • resolution
  • direct character speech
  • repetition for emphasis
Rhyme & Sound Awareness:
  • rhyme
Book Info

Published by Puffin Books in 1993 (ISBN: 9780140554786)

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