Hugless Douglas

Written by David Melling

For ages 0 to 5

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This book is best for:
  • action verbs
  • inferencing
  • print awareness


Douglas, a young brown bear, wakes up one morning in desperate need of a hug. He tries to hug a rock, a tree and even a bush. But, none of them seem quite right. Douglas soon discovers the best hugs are from the people he loves.

Hugless Douglas is a picture book that’s jam-packed with humour. Little ones will love all of Douglas’ silly actions, like cuddling armfuls of wriggly sheep and wiping his nose on a poor rabbit’s bottom! The book provides many opportunities for children to make inferences about the story. For example, what happened to the wise owl? And who might be in the deep dark cave?

This is a fantastic book if you would like to increase children’s awareness of print as keywords are often emphasised through variations in font and positioning. For example, the word ‘tall’ is stretched to appear taller than the rest of the text and the word ‘yawn’ arches across the double page spread.

For further speech and language targets in Hugless Douglas, see the list below.

Book Details

Narrative Structure: Complete Episode

Story Plot: Wishing Tale

  • animals
  • bears
  • friends
  • love

Speech and Language Targets

Speech Sounds:
  • /b/ - bear, big, best, bush, baa, rabbit
  • /g/ - hug, big
  • /h/ - hug, heavy, high
  • conjunctions (and, so, but) e.g. "so he hugged something big, but it was too heavy"
  • possessive pronouns (my) e.g. "my best hugs are..."
  • subjective pronouns (I) e.g. "I need a hug"
  • action verbs (e.g. yawn, hug, wriggle, brush, squeeze, trot, cuddle, run, tug, sniff)
  • identifying obstacles to an action
  • making inferences (e.g. What could be hiding in the leaves? What happened to the wise owl? Who might be in the deep dark cave?)
  • synonyms (hug, cuddle)
Print Awareness:
  • visible sounds
  • typesetting changes (font, size, direction)
  • descriptive (big, heavy, tall)
  • location (top, bottom, middle)
  • character description
  • time
  • setting
  • sequencing
  • initiating event
  • problem
  • plans
  • resolution
  • dialogue
Book Info

Published by Hachette Children's Group in 2010 (ISBN: 9781589250987)

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