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Fantastic Mr. Fox by Roald Dahl

Teacher Guide by Heidi Deck

Find this Common Core aligned Teacher Guide and more like it in our Elementary School Category!

Fantastic Mr. Fox Lesson Plans

Student Activities for Fantastic Mr. Fox Include:

Written by Roald Dahl, one of the greatest story tellers of all time, Fantastic Mr. Fox is a hilarious book that readers in Grades 2-5 will adore. Three horribly cruel, but also entertaining farmers are out for revenge against Mr. Fox, who has been stealing their livestock to provide for his wife and four baby foxes. Students will love to cheer on Mr. Fox and his family as he hatches a plan to outwit the farmers. This short, but delightful novel is full of rich vocabulary that will leave readers and teachers hungry for more. It is the perfect book to introduce young readers to Roald Dahl and all of his delightful works.

Fantastic Mr. Fox Lesson Plans, Student Activities and Graphic Organizers

Fantastic Mr. Fox Summary


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The Fantastic Mr. Fox book is perfect for practicing summarization, since it is short, but also contains many important plot elements. Students transitioning from summarizing short stories to summarizing lengthier chapter books will benefit from having to synthesize the short chapters of this book into an entire book summary. The storyboard format will help students practice being concise and thinking critically about the importance of events.



Consider having students plan their storyboard using a blank template, prior to creating the full storyboard online. Students should begin with the narrative in each box before adding character dialogue. This will allow them to focus on the purpose of summarizing and determine important events before getting distracted by the details of the storyboard. Students can also be given a set number of frames to use for the storyboard, to promote conciseness. After planning with a template, students can compare the important events they chose with a partner, and the class could discuss why different events in the story were included in the storyboard rather than others.

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)


Student Instructions

Create a visual summary of Fantastic Mr. Fox.


  1. Pick two important events from the beginning, middle, and end of the story.
  2. Create an image for each event.
  3. Write a description of each event.



(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)





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Fantastic Mr. Fox Character Traits


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This activity allows for a more in-depth look at one or more Fantastic Mr. Fox characters, with a focus on character traits. Students should provide textual evidence to support the character trait they choose. Students can support their ideas with dialogue, thoughts, or actions of the character they are portraying. Here is an example of a character trait storyboard using Storyboard That's T-Chart layout. This example features two character traits for Mr. Fox, but students could also put multiple characters across the top of the chart and provide evidence for character traits of each.

Possible character traits for characters in Fantastic Mr. Fox:

  • Mr. Fox: Generous, clever, brave, strong willed
  • Boggis, Bunce, or Bean: Gluttonous, selfish, cruel, greedy
  • Beaver: Kind, helpful

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)


Student Instructions

Create a storyboard that shows character traits for one of the characters from Fantastic Mr. Fox.


  1. Click "Use this Template" from the assignment.
  2. Identify two character traits for the character. Type the traits in the title boxes.
  3. Make a picture that shows each trait.
  4. Give textual evidence to support the traits you chose.


(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)





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Fantastic Mr. Fox Vocabulary


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Roald Dahl uses complex sentence structures and rich vocabulary. Students can use contextual clues to determine the meaning of many of the words, but a more thorough look at vocabulary is a valuable activity for this book. Student can use a spider web or a traditional storyboard layout to map out the meaning of words with contextual clues and definitions. They can then depict the scenes where the words are used.


Example Fantastic Mr. Fox Vocabulary Words

  • sprawling
  • evergreen
  • gesture
  • distractedly
  • fluttering
  • indigenous
  • compound
  • inaudibly
  • annoyed
  • obviously
  • reverie
  • exaggerate
  • intrigue
  • khaki
  • tweed
  • smothered
  • acre
  • eerie

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)


Student Instructions

Demonstrate your understanding of the vocabulary words in Fantastic Mr. Fox by creating visualizations.


  1. Choose three vocabulary words from the story and type them in the title boxes.
  2. Find the definition in a print or online dictionary.
  3. Write a sentence that uses the vocabulary word.
  4. Illustrate the meaning of the word in the cell using a combination of scenes, characters, and items.
    • Alternatively, use Photos for Class to show the meaning of the words with the search bar.
  5. Save and submit your storyboard.



(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)





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Fantastic Mr. Fox Theme Graphic Organizer


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In this activity, students will identify a theme from Fantastic Mr. Fox and support the theme with evidence from the text. One of the themes clearly depicted in the book is perseverance. Despite the challenges that Mr. Fox faces, he perseveres to help his family and the other animals. Students can depict the textual evidence that supports a theme of their choice.

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)


Student Instructions

Create a storyboard that identifies themes in Fantastic Mr. Fox. Illustrate examples of each theme and write a short description below each cell.


  1. Click "Use this Template" from the assignment.
  2. Identify the theme(s) from Fantastic Mr. Fox you wish to include and replace the "Theme 1" text.
  3. Create an image for an example that represents this theme.
  4. Write a description of each of the examples.



(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)





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Fantastic Mr. Fox Characters


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Character mapping is always a helpful activity for students and can serve as a reference as students continue to read. In this activity, students can explore physical appearance, character traits, character motivation, and character relationships. This activity is easily modified to include any character focus that students have been working on. Students can build on the character map as they read and new characters are introduced, or create it as a summary activity.

Here is an example from Fantastic Mr. Fox:

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)


Student Instructions

Create a character map for the major characters.


  1. Identify the major characters in Fantastic Mr. Fox and type their names into the different title boxes.
  2. Choose a Storyboard That character to represent each of the book characters.
    • Select colors and a pose appropriate to story and character traits.
  3. Choose a scene or background that makes sense for the character.
  4. Fill in Textables for Physical Appearance, Traits, Motivation, and Relationships.
  5. Save and submit the assignment.


(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)





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A Quick Synopsis of Fantastic Mr. Fox

The story begins by introducing three horribly gluttonous farmers who are being robbed of their livestock by a clever fox trying to provide for his family. The farmers, Boggis, Bunce, and Bean, decide they must come up with plan to catch the fox. They stake out the fox’s hole, but only manage to shoot off Mr. Fox's tail. Unwilling to give up easily, they plan to dig the foxes out. In desperation, Mr. Fox and his family begin their own excavations, attempting to out-dig the farmers. Things begin to look bleak when the farmers fetch their caterpillar tractors, but they still can’t catch the foxes.

The fanatical pursuit continues as the three farmers vow that they will not give up until they have the fox strung up. They decide they will starve him out and immediately set up camp by the hole and call for all the farm workers to surround the hill. The plan is working – the foxes are getting weaker and hungrier by the minute. Right when it looks like they might give up, Mr. Fox comes up with a fantastic plan. Leaving Mrs. Fox behind to rest, Mr. Fox and his young foxes begin frantically digging in one specific direction – Boggis’ Chicken House. They carefully steal some chickens and then are off to raid Bunce’s storehouse of ducks, geese, and vegetables, as well as Bean’s apple cider cellar.

On the way, they come across Badger who is also digging for his life and he tells the foxes that many digging animals are in danger because of the farmers’ plot against the foxes! Mr. Fox proves he is not just clever but also generous by inviting all the other animals for the greatest feast of all time, prepared from their recently stolen loot. He then has even grander plans to build an underground town and never have to go above ground again! The story ends with the farmers waiting in the pouring rain. It looks like they will be here for a long, long time.


Essential Questions for Fantastic Mr. Fox

  1. What makes Mr. Fox so "fantastic"?
  2. What does it mean to persevere?
  3. Is stealing ever okay?
  4. How is kindness rewarded?


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•   (English) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Español) Fantástico Sr. Fox   •   (Français) Fantastique Mr. Fox   •   (Deutsch) Fantastischer Herr Fox   •   (Italiana) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Nederlands) Fantastic Mr Fox   •   (Português) Fantástico Mr. Fox   •   (עברית) פנטסטי מר פוקס   •   (العَرَبِيَّة) رائعة السيد فوكس   •   (हिन्दी) बढ़िया श्री फॉक्स   •   (ру́сский язы́к) Фантастический Мистер Фокс   •   (Dansk) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Svenska) Fantastic Mr Fox   •   (Suomi) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Norsk) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Türkçe) Bayat Tilki   •   (Polski) Fantastyczny Pan Fox   •   (Româna) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Ceština) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Slovenský) Fantastický pán Fox   •   (Magyar) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Hrvatski) Fantastičan Gospodin Fox   •   (български) Фантастичен Господин Фокс   •   (Lietuvos) Fantastinis p Lapė   •   (Slovenščina) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (Latvijas) Fantastic Mr. Fox   •   (eesti) Fantastiline Härra Fox