The Last Laugh

This narrative is about boastful Monkey who loves swinging through the trees and singing as she twists and twirls. Monkey laughs at her friends who can’t do what she can! But one day Monkey realises just how special and clever her friends really are.

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Text download

The Last Laugh as PDF (1.6MB) (opens in new window)

The Last Laugh as PowerPoint slideshow (36.7MB) (download)


Printable worksheets


Who is good at what? (78KB) Monkey: before and after (77KB) Make stick puppets (681KB)  

Monkey said ... (1.0MB) 

Story map: The Last laugh (77KB)



Teaching & learning sequence

This teaching and learning sequence outlines classroom strategies for The Last Laugh, including:

  • ways to incorporate the ‘Big Six’ core elements of reading development
  • fun, engaging and adaptable student activities for a diverse range of abilities
  • links to the Australian Curriculum.

Download a PDF of this teaching sequence (991KB).

Text features Cross-curriculum links to the Australian Curriculum
  • Illustrations that support the story
  • Repeated refrain
  • Rhyming words
  • Alliteration
  • Descriptive language – adjectives, adverbs and adverbial phrases
  • Saying verbs such as ‘wailed’ and ‘sobbed’
  • Time connectives such as ‘one day’, ‘later that day’ and ‘sometime later’
  • Repeated phrases 
  • Variety of sentence structures 
  • Foundation: Investigate who they are and the people in their world AC9HPFP01
  • Foundation: Practise personal and social skills to interact respectfully with others AC9HPFP02
  • Foundation: Express and describe emotions they experience AC9HPFP03
  • Years 1 and 2: Describe their personal qualities and those of others, and explain how they contribute to developing identities AC9HP2P01
  • Years 1 and 2: Identify and explore skills and strategies to develop respectful relationships AC9HP2P02
  • Years 1 and 2: Identify how different situations influence emotional responses AC9HP2P03


First read

As a whole group, enjoy sharing the text and learning together.


Ask students to think about all the things they are good at. What things do you like to do? What things are you good at? Have students turn to a partner and talk about this. In a whole-class discussion, encourage students to share their skills and talents such as cooking, drawing, singing, writing, running, telling jokes, or being a good friend. Draw the conclusion that different people are good at different things.

Show the front cover of The Last Laugh. Introduce the main character of the story, Monkey. What things might Monkey be good at? Discuss as a group.

Read aloud

Read the book aloud with few interruptions. Model reading with fluency and use expression. The aim is to engage students in the story, to entertain them and allow them to enjoy the plot, the illustrations and the language of the text.

After reading, engage the class in an open-ended discussion. What do you like about this book? What did you learn by hearing this story?

Reread the text. This time encourage students to join in as you read, particularly as the refrain is read on pages 3, 7, 11, 15 and 29. During this second read, stop and pose more specific questions to initiate discussion around the plot, the characters and their motivations. Why is Monkey laughing? What does this tell you about Monkey’s personality? What is Monkey feeling now? How can you tell? What did Monkey learn about her friends? What did she learn about herself?

Make meaning

Provide time for students to reflect on the story by participating in a class discussion. Prompt the students to think deeply about their responses by posing open-ended questions. What is your opinion of the story, and why? Who do you think is the most interesting character, and why? Do you think the author has a message? What might it be?

Have several strips of paper ready to scribe students’ responses onto as you reflect on the plot. Discuss as a whole group: What happened first in the story? What was the first main event? Write students’ ideas onto one of the strips of paper. Then what happened? What was the next main event? Again, use students’ responses to write down the second main event, onto another strip of paper. Continue until the whole story has been summarised, using a different strip of paper for each event.

Have students sit in a large circle, and use the statements on the strips of paper to retell the story. Read out each statement and invite students to place them into the correct order.

Revisit the text

Return to the text several times to look more closely at different aspects of its content, structure and language features. This is a great vehicle for exploring the ‘Big Six’ of literacy in an integrated way, with all components linking to the same text.


Reading is about making meaning. Choose from these comprehension activities to help your students explore the text deeply, make personal connections, develop new understandings, and draw conclusions. The activities will also help students analyse the text, think critically about it and form their own opinions. 

Talking text types (whole-group activity)

Discuss the text type and its purpose. What sort of text is The Last Laugh? Ask students to identify the features of the text that show it is a fictional narrative (the use of illustrations, the characters and setting, the repeated refrain, describing language and dialogue).

What is the purpose of a narrative? Discuss and draw out that a narrative is written to entertain people and to provide enjoyment, and some narratives contain a message. What message do you get from this story? What do you think the author believes about friendship?

Revisit the text. Ask students to focus on the illustrations as you slowly turn each page. How do the illustrations add to the story? What do they show us that isn’t written in the text? Discuss as a group.

Australian Curriculum links

Four favourites (small-group activity)

Have students work in small groups to reflect on the story. Have each group fold a large sheet of paper in half and in half again to create four squares. In each square have the students write and/or draw their ‘Four favourites’: favourite character, favourite illustration, favourite part of the story, four favourite words.

Have each group present their 'Four favourites' poster to the class.

Australian Curriculum links

Character data chart (partner activity)

Discuss as a group. What was each character in the book good at? Why were they good at these things? Discuss and draw out that they have different body parts and skills that make them able to do different things well.

Have students work with a partner to fill in the Who is good at what? data chart by writing and/or drawing.

Print the Who is good at what? data chart.

Australian Curriculum links

Monkey’s motives (independent activity)

Hold a class discussion about Monkey. What is Monkey good at? Why did she laugh at her friends? What happened to Monkey to make her sad and scared?

Draw up a T-chart with the headings ‘Problem’ and ‘Solution’. Ask students about the problem that Monkey encountered and how this problem was solved. Use their ideas to fill in the chart.

Discuss. How did this incident change Monkey? How would you describe Monkey’s personality before the problem? Use students’ ideas to list adjectives describing Monkey’s personality on a chart.

What was Monkey like at the end of the story? How did she change? Encourage students to use evidence from the text to support their ideas. See the Text analysis section in Teacher talk for more information about using evidence from the text to justify thinking.

Introduce the Monkey: before and after worksheet, and have students complete it independently.

Print the Monkey: before and after worksheet.

Australian Curriculum links

Making connections (whole-group activity)

Do you think Monkey is a good friend? Do you think the other characters are good friends? Discuss and encourage students to cite evidence from the text to support their answers.

Discuss the human-like thoughts and feelings of the characters in The Last Laugh. Encourage students to recognise the characters’ qualities and personality traits and relate these to their own experiences. What characters showed qualities of being a good friend and how did they do this? How do you know you are being a good friend? What makes a good friend? Discuss and use students’ ideas to create a list. Have students think about a time when they were a good friend. Have them take turns telling a partner or the group about this experience.

See the Text analysis section in Teacher talk for an example of how to use a text analysis chart to guide students to use evidence to justify their thinking.

Australian Curriculum links

Phonological awareness (including phonemic awareness)

These activities will help students to hear the sounds and rhythms of language. Guide them as they explore syllables, onset and rime and listen for phonemes – the smallest units of sound within a word. Use the activities to help your students identify the phonemes in words and practise blending, segmenting and manipulating these sounds.

Exploring syllables (whole-group activity)

Use the characters’ names to explore syllables. Say and clap the syllables in each character's name: Mon-key (two syllables), Li-on (two syllables), E-le-phant (three syllables), Bird (one syllable). Repeat and ask the students to join in.

Explain that each syllable in a word must include a vowel sound. Beginning with the character Bird, explore this concept. What vowel sound can you hear? Repeat with the other characters’ names (Monkey, Lion and then Elephant), this time identifying the vowel sounds that can be heard in each syllable.

Australian Curriculum links

Character phonemes (whole-group activity)

Explain to students that they are going to be using their listening skills to hear sounds in words. Slowly say the word ‘monkey’ and ask students to listen for the sound they hear at the beginning of the word. Identify students’ names in the class that also begin with the m sound, and have students listen for this sound as the names are said. What other words begin with the m sound? Have students share their ideas and discuss.

Use the characters’ names to play a game of ‘odd one out’. Say the name ‘Monkey’ and two other names that begin with the m sound such as ‘Marlee’ and ‘Morgan’ as well as one other name that doesn’t begin with the m sound such as ‘Trey’. Ask students to identify the name that begins with a different sound.

Repeat with l as in ‘lion’ and b as in ‘bird’.

Australian Curriculum links

Segmenting sounds (whole-group activity)

Use the characters’ names to focus on segmenting individual sounds in words. Ask students to say the name of each character to their partner. Their partner then says each sound they hear in that character’s name (Bird – b, er, d; Monkey – m, u, n, k, long e). Students can then swap roles. Discuss as a whole group the sounds the students identified in each name.

Australian Curriculum links


Evidence shows that children learn best about the relationship between phonemes and graphemes when instruction occurs through a daily structured synthetic phonics program (also known as systematic synthetic phonics). Knowing about these relationships will help students to decode, and this is crucial for their continued reading development.

In addition to your phonics program it is helpful to expose students to letter–sound relationships they come across in other contexts, such as during shared reading experiences. Choose activities that are relevant to your students so they can practise and reinforce already learnt concepts, so as to build automaticity in recognising letter–sound relationships.

Saying and sorting sounds (small-group activity)

Revisit the refrain and read it aloud as a class. Use some of the words in the refrain to reinforce letter–sound relationships that your students have learnt. For example you could write the words ‘swing’, ‘spin’ and ‘clever’ on the top of separate large pieces of paper with room to add further words underneath. Write the words ‘twist’ and ‘twirl’ on the top of a further piece of paper. Read through the words slowly asking students to pay attention to the sounds they hear in each word. Why do you think I have written these words like this? Discuss and draw out that all the words begin with adjacent consonants and this means there are two sounds made by two consonants at the beginning of a word.

Begin with the word ‘swing’ and ask students to listen to the two sounds they hear at the beginning of the word – s and w. Have students think of other words that begin with the adjacent consonant sounds s and w, such as ‘sweet’, ‘swap’, ‘swim’, ‘sway’, ‘swarm’ and ‘sweat’. List these words on the chart.

Repeat with the other words on the lists: ‘spin’ (spoke, spot, speak, sport), ‘clever’ (clear, clip, cloud, clean) and ‘twist’ and ‘twirl’ (twig, tweet, twelve, twenty).

Cut the words into separate word cards. Have small groups of students sort the cards into groups according to their beginning adjacent consonants.

Australian Curriculum links

Long and short vowels (whole-group activity)

Revisit the refrain on page 3 and use the words ‘swing’, ‘spin’, ‘twist’ and ‘fine’ to reinforce students' understanding of the long i and short i sounds. What sounds do you hear in the word ‘spin’? What sound does the letter ‘i’ make in this word? Repeat with the words ‘swing’ and ‘twist’.

Introduce the word ‘fine’. Discuss the sounds in the word. What sound does the letter ‘i’ make in this word? Discuss and draw out that sometimes the sound can be a short vowel as in ‘spin’ and sometimes it is a long vowel sound as in ‘fine’.

Australian Curriculum links

Focus on vowel digraphs (whole-group activity)

Support your students to consolidate their knowledge of vowel digraphs such as ‘ir’ making the er sound as in ‘bird’ and ‘twirl’. Write the words on a chart and invite a student to underline the letters that make the er sound. Have students brainstorm other words with this sound and add them to the chart. Again, underline the letters that make the er sound. Point out the different ways that this sound can be represented.

Australian Curriculum links

Oral language

Oral language development begins at birth, and having a rich oral language is beneficial as a foundational and ongoing resource for literacy development. Oral language is embedded throughout the shared reading experience as students listen and respond to quality texts.

It is also valuable to involve students in specific activities that will continue to improve their oral language skills. Choose from these activities to help students develop and practise important communication skills.

Retelling (partner activity)

Have students sit with a partner and take turns retelling the story. Encourage them to include as many details as they can when retelling.

Remind students about using positive speaking and listening behaviours. Discuss the importance of using an appropriate volume so that their voice is not too loud and not too soft, and model the use of appropriate body language such as facing each other, having eye contact and nodding.

Encourage students to check the text for accuracy after their retelling.

Australian Curriculum links

Act it out (small-group activity)

In groups of four, have students act out the story. Encourage students to use collaborative skills to decide on parts, so that each student in the group takes on the role of one of the characters: Monkey, Elephant, Lion and Bird. Groups can practise their role-plays and take turns presenting them to the class.

Australian Curriculum links

Puppet play (small-group activity)

Working in groups of four, have students complete the Make stick puppets printable worksheet. Have students colour in the illustrations, cut them out and tape them onto wooden craft sticks to create a stick puppet of each character.

Each group can either retell The Last Laugh using the puppets, or create their own story using the characters from the story. Have groups practise their puppet plays before presenting to the class.

Print the Make stick puppets worksheet.

Australian Curriculum links


Activities aimed at teaching and practising fluency are important for students on their journey towards becoming independent readers. Explicitly modelling fluency and providing opportunities for students to practise reading aloud are integral to this.

Readers theatre (partner activity)

Print out a copy of the repeated refrain from the text (for example, page 3 or page 7). Have students work with a partner and decide who is to read which line/s. For example:

Child 1: Look at me swing.

Child 2: Look at me spin.

Both: I twist and twirl – yippee!

Child 1: No one is as fine.

Child 2: No one is as fun.

Both: No one is as clever as me.

Have each pair practise reading aloud until it sounds great! Pairs can then present their reading to the class.

Australian Curriculum links

Speaking of expression (whole-group activity)

Revisit pages 4 and 5 and read aloud. How did my voice sound when I read the words Monkey was saying? Discuss. Repeat with other dialogue in the text. Invite students to read the dialogue. Encourage them to make their voice sound the way the character might sound when they are speaking.

Australian Curriculum links


Having a rich, broad vocabulary assists students when they are tackling new texts. These vocabulary activities will help them to build their growing bank of words.

The activities introduce students to new Tier 2 and Tier 3 words, as well as exploring word families and a range of different word types.

Saying verbs (independent activity)

Revisit the dialogue in the book and search for the different ‘saying’ verbs that the author has used (sobbed, said, asked, called, wailed, laughed). Create a class list and discuss the meaning of each word. Support students with English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) by using facial expressions and body language to show the meaning of each word.

Discuss each saying verb on the list further: What does this word tell us about the character’s feelings? What does it tell you about their personality? What does the word tell you about what the character has done or might do next?

Have students talk with a partner about other saying verbs. Invite pairs to share their ideas and add these to the class list. Introduce the Monkey said … worksheet, and have them complete it, before sharing their work in a small-group setting.

Print the Monkey said … worksheet.

Australian Curriculum links

Action verbs and adverbs (whole-group activity)

Revisit pages 18 and 19, and read aloud. What actions did Monkey do? What words tell us what these actions are? Highlight the action verbs in the text (looked, turned, climb, wriggled, pulled). What word described the actions of the butterfly? (flitted)

Explain that words used to describe what someone or something is doing are called verbs. Ask students to turn and talk with a partner about other action verbs they know of. Have students share their ideas and create a class list.

Revisit page 25 and reread the sentence ‘Monkey clung tightly to the branch …’. What did Monkey hold on to? How was she holding the branch? Discuss and draw out that she was holding it tightly. Highlight the word ‘tightly’ and explain that this word is an adverb and it explains how an action is done. Highlight the word ‘gently’ and ask the students to explain why it is an adverb.

Use a common verb such as ‘walk’ and experiment with adding different adverbs to it. What different ways can we walk? (walk slowly, walk quickly, walk heavily, walk lightly, walk quietly)

Australian Curriculum links

Describing words (whole-group activity)

Revisit the text to find examples of describing words such as ‘strong, agile trunk’, ‘razor-sharp teeth’ and ‘strong beak’. Explain that words used to describe something are called adjectives. Write adjectives from the text onto a chart. Have students think of other adjectives they know of and use their ideas to brainstorm a list on a chart.

Australian Curriculum links

Show not tell (whole-group activity)

Revisit page 27 and read the sentence: ‘Monkey looked up at her friends, with her eyes full of tears.’ What  does the phrase ‘eyes full of tears’ mean? Discuss and draw out that it means Monkey was close to crying. Why didn’t the author just say that Monkey felt like crying or was close to crying? Discuss and draw out that sometimes an author can show the reader what a character is feeling by describing the character’s actions.

Highlight this with other examples in the text such as ‘scampered up a tree’ on page 9, and ‘Time passed. Light was fading.’ on page 20.

Australian Curriculum links

Time connectives (whole-group activity)

Revisit page 4 and point out that the first sentence begins with ‘One day …’. Why would the author begin a sentence like this? Discuss and draw out that it gives a time setting for the story. Turn to page 8 and highlight the use of ‘Later that day …’. Explain that these phrases are used in a narrative so that the reader knows when each part of the story is happening.

Search through the text to find other examples of the use of time connectives (‘The next day …’; ‘Sometime later …’; ‘Time passed.’).

Australian Curriculum links

Reflecting on learning

Help students ‘bring it all together’ and reflect on their understandings by completing the graphic organiser either independently or with a partner.

Story map: The Last Laugh

Reflect on The Last Laugh. Who are the characters and where is the story set? What problem did Monkey have? How was her problem solved? Have students use the Story map: The Last Laugh graphic organiser to synthesise their thoughts about the text.

Print the Story map: The Last Laugh graphic organiser.

For families - new for 2024! 

Reinforce your classroom learning by telling families in your class about The Last Laugh.

Families can share the text at home and use the information provided to build knowledge and instill a love of reading.

Find out more about The Last Laugh (for families)


Teacher talk

Read about evidence-based theories that underpin best teaching practices. Teacher talk includes:

  • pedagogic practices surrounding the 'Big Six' core elements of reading development
  • instructional strategies to scaffold learning for a diverse range of students, including English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) students and students from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds
  • guidance for integrating these theories and strategies into your reading program.

Download a PDF of Teacher talk The Last Laugh (474KB).

Teaching practices & strategies

Try these strategies as you share The Last Laugh with your class, and use them in other aspects of your reading program too.

Scaffolding comprehension

You can support your students in gaining a deep understanding of the text by implementing various teaching and learning strategies. These strategies include providing an environment where rich discussions occur, modelling the think aloud strategy, implementing a text analysis task and guiding your students to make personal connections with the text.

Rich talk

Provide rich, high-quality talk about the text. This should involve both teacher-to-student and student-to-student talk (Duke & Pearson, 2002).

Encourage discussions at a number of levels including:

  • clarifying information
  • discussing particular vocabulary
  • predicting plot
  • making interpretations about character qualities
  • making connections to characters, events, settings and the plot
  • identifying the underlying messages that are intended by the author.

Think aloud

The think aloud strategy is a recognised instructional technique for improving comprehension (Duke & Pearson, 2002). You can use it to talk about the plot and the characters and their qualities. Think aloud involves you saying what you are thinking as you perform a specific comprehension strategy. For example, you could talk out loud about the qualities of one of the characters and why you think they have these qualities. Model how to use evidence from the text to support and explain your thinking, such as what is happening in the illustrations and the character’s actions and language.

The think aloud strategy can be used regularly by teachers. It can also be used by students. The think aloud strategy can help to further improve students’ comprehension, so they need to be encouraged to use this practice when they read (Duke & Pearson, 2002).

Text analysis

Priscilla Witte (2016) has developed a text analysis chart that can be used to help your students explore The Last Laugh by talking about the characters’ feelings, actions and qualities, as well as the key events in the story and the author’s message. This chart can be used in conjunction with the think aloud process.

The text analysis chart below has been adapted from Witte’s (2016) and can be used as a graphic organiser to guide teacher talk and discussion. Explain to students that the graphic organiser will help them to think about the characters in The Last Laugh and what happened in the story. Copy the Text analysis graphic organiser (see example below) onto a large chart. Demonstrate how to fill in the chart as you think aloud and record your thoughts. Involve the students in the discussion and use their ideas to fill in the chart. Explicit demonstration of this task will take time so you may like to revisit it over several days.

The text analysis graphic organiser will also enable students to understand the importance of being able to justify their thinking using evidence from the text (Witte, 2016). It will be important for you to model how readers use evidence from the text to make judgements about a character’s actions, feelings, qualities and the message that the author is sending.

Areas for discussion about the author’s implied messages include:

  • key events that happen and how the characters respond to these
  • language used by the author that gives clues about a character’s feelings or qualities
  • illustrations that give clues about a character’s feelings or qualities
  • the culmination of events to understand the author’s underlying message.

Text analysis chart

Key event Character’s actions
or feelings
Evidence from
the text
Central message:

View this completed chart as an example of a completed text analysis of The Last Laugh. Note: you may want to condense the number of key events that you analyse.

Key event Character’s actions
or feelings
Evidence from
the text
Monkey loved to play, swing and sing. Monkey is fun-loving, playful and cheerful. She is very talented at swinging through the trees, and this makes her feel happy. Monkey is self confident, boastful and talented.

Words that Monkey

‘No one is as fine.

No one is as fun.

No one is as clever
as me.’

Illustrations of Monkey show her looking very pleased with herself.

We can relate to Monkey’s human traits of being
boastful and confident as we all have things we are good at and feel proud about.

Monkey and Elephant playing – Monkey is fast and Elephant is slow. Monkey was laughing cheekily at Elephant. Elephant was slow, feeling sad and doubting his abilities.

Monkey doesn’t
notice or reflect on
how her actions
and words made
Elephant feel.


Monkey laughed because Elephant was too slow.

You can’t keep up with me.’

Faces of Monkey and Elephant in the illustrations show their feelings.

Monkey was not aware that her actions didn’t consider the emotions and needs of others.

The notion of empathy can be explored through this friendship.

Monkey and Lion – both are fast but Monkey can climb high and Lion can’t. Monkey was laughing and boasting about herself. Lion was left alone at the bottom of the tree.

Monkey is still boasting and not reflecting on how her actions and responses affect Lion’s feelings.


Monkey laughed at Lion.

‘You can’t climb as
high as I can.’

Illustrations show Monkey showing off and laughing at Lion.

Again, Monkey was not aware that her actions didn’t consider the emotions and needs of others.
Monkey and Bird – both are fast and can go up high, but Bird can’t swing like Monkey. Monkey was laughing and boasting about herself. Bird was left alone on the branch of the tree. Monkey is still boasting and not reflecting on how her actions and response affect how Bird is feeling.

Bird could not swing, and Monkey laughed.

Illustrations show Monkey leaving Bird alone.

Monkey still shows no awareness that her actions did not consider the emotions and needs of others.
Monkey follows a butterfly. Monkey was not thinking about where she was swinging. Monkey is trying to climb as high as the butterfly – testing herself. Trying to be the same as the butterfly. She is a risk-taker.

She followed, and followed, and followed. She went up. She went down. She went around and around and around.

Illustrations show Monkey high on a small branch and taking big swings.

Monkey was not aware that by climbing too high she was in an unsafe situation.
Monkey gets stuck in a tree. Monkey was feeling frightened, tired and scared. Monkey is trying to free herself, therefore showing initiative. Monkey is becoming scared.

‘Oh, no,’ cried

Monkey was tired
and scared.

Illustrations show
Monkey panicking.

Monkey was aware that she was now in an unsafe situation.
Bird helps Monkey. Monkey was very scared and upset. Bird is feeling useful. Monkey is able to reflect on how she needs help. Bird shows support for Monkey by flying off to get help.

‘No,’ sobbed Monkey.

Explanation about the vine being tangled around
her tail.

Illustrations show Monkey is stuck.

Bird was happy to help Monkey and didn’t hesitate even though Monkey laughed at her, and this is what a ‘good’ friend does.
Bird gets Elephant and Lion to help. Each animal uses a special feature and skill to help free Monkey.

Monkey is thankful and appreciative of the help from her friends.

Elephant, Bird and Lion feel proud because they cleverly solved a problem.

A description of how Elephant and Lion help Monkey.

Illustrations show them looking pleased and proud.

Elephant and Lion help Monkey despite Monkey making fun of them earlier. This shows loyalty and a willingness to forgive, which are positive qualities.
Monkey sings a different song. Monkey has a new song that shows respect and appreciation for her friends. Monkey has changed by showing an understanding of how friends help each other, and that she isn’t the only one who has talents and skills. She realises that everyone has something special and unique about themselves.

My friends are all fine,

My friends are all fun,

My friends are all clever like me!

People can change just like Monkey did. Being a good friend isn’t just about playing and having fun together. Good friends help each other and recognise and appreciate each other’s strengths and talents.
Central message: The text shows the importance of interacting positively with each other and understanding that including others is important for their wellbeing. The text also has a strong message about collaborating and banding together in times of need. These are important elements of personal and social responsibility. Themes that could be explored are friendship, respect, empathy, inclusion, collaboration, individual differences and individual strengths.

By completing a text analysis of The Last Laugh you can make explicit links to content descriptions in Health and Physical Education in the Australian Curriculum. Descriptors can be viewed here:

Australian Curriculum links

Making connections

The think aloud strategy (see more information in the 'Scaffolding comprehension' section in Teacher talk) can be used to help your students make connections with the text. Revisit The Last Laugh and explain how you might connect to the feelings of the characters in the text. Justify your thinking out loud.

Ask students to identify with the characters or their feelings and relate these to their own personal experiences. This could involve both teacher-to-student and student-to-student talk (Duke & Pearson, 2002). Encourage students to share personal experiences by prompting them with questions. Have you ever boasted about something you can do? Have you ever felt sad because someone upset you? Have you ever been in a situation where lots of people have helped complete a job or task? Do you know of any other characters in stories who are boastful? Share who they are and how they are boastful.

Australian Curriculum links


Duke, N. & Pearson, P. (2002). Effective practices for developing reading comprehension. In A. E. Farstrup & S. J. Samuels (Eds.), What research has to say about reading instruction (3rd ed.). Newark, DE: International Reading Association, Inc.

Witte, P. G. (2016). Teaching first graders to comprehend complex texts through read-alouds. The reading teacher, 70(1), 29–38.