Using 'Is' as a teaching resource
As a novel, 'Is' is not only an entertaining mystery, but it also challenges gender stereotypes, and encourages an interest in science and engineering at the same time.
Isabel Williams who is no ordinary schoolgirl - she believes she is Isambard Kingdom Brunel reborn! That's the theme of this compelling new novel for 9-12 year olds that has at its heart a girl's passion for engineering coupled with an intriguing mystery. With a good dose of humour throughout, the story makes the subject come alive in a very readable and memorable way.
The novel can of course simply be enjoyed as part of an English lesson, but the flexibility of KS2 delivery allows for fiction to be used as a way into other subjects, such as science, technology, history etc. Various subjects are covered in the novel which touch directly or indirectly on engineering principles, as well as historical references to Brunel and his achievements.
Throughout the novel are references which can act as a springboard to classroom activities, linked to the KS2 Curriculum. For example, History Units: 4, 11 and 12 of History; Design & Technology Units: 1B, 1D, 2A and 6A; Art & Design Units 5B and 9; Science Units: 1E, 2E, 4E and 6E.
Direct links to related curriculum references can be found here: Curriculum Links
Tower Hamlets Children’s Library Service has produced a list of children's fiction books which include elements of the sciences and can be used in a similar way to 'Is'. For a pdf click here: Book List