Books by Roald Dahl: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Mary Grace Miller

Mary Grace has taught first grade for 8 years and has a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and is licensed in ESL.

Read this lesson to find out who Roald Dahl was and all the different books he wrote. Learn about 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,' 'Matilda,' 'James and the Giant Peach,' and more!

Who is Roald Dahl?

Roald Dahl
roald dahl

You just went with your family to see the show Matilda on Broadway. You loved it! On the way home, your mom mentions that the show was based on a book by an author named Roald Dahl. You start talking about him and learn that he has written lots of other books. This lesson will teach you about many of his most well-known books for kids!

Roald Dahl was born in 1916 in the country Wales. He published his first short story in 1943, when he was 27 years old. He began to write his most famous books in the 1970s, and Charlie and the Chocolate factory was published in 1964. He wrote lots more of his famous books, including Matilda, in the 1980s. He died in 1990 at the age of 74.

The Charlie Books

There are two books in the Charlie book series: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. Roald Dahl started a third book in the series, but did not finish it. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory has been made into two movies- one made in 1971, and another one in 2005. The books focus on a poor boy named Charlie Bucket who wins a golden ticket to enter the candy factory of the mysterious Willy Wonka. Inside the factory, there are lots of magical candy rooms with things like chocolate rivers and magical gum. The other children on the tour end up going home or turning into blueberries, but Charlie makes it out with Wonka and they ride the glass elevator to Charlie's house, where they pick up the rest of Charlie's family for the second adventure.


Matilda was published in 1988 and was also made into a movie. It has just become a Broadway play, which is how you found out about Roald Dahl in the first place! Matilda is a very smart girl who lives with her terrible parents, who are not as smart as her and are really mean to her. Matilda has a really nice teacher at school named Miss Honey, who she loves. Matilda has special powers and can make things move with her eyes. She uses these powers to play tricks on her mean parents and the mean headmaster at her school, Mrs. Trunchbull. At the end of the book, Matilda and Miss Honey decide to live together and have a happy ending.

James and the Giant Peach

James and the Giant Peach was published in 1961. It is about a boy named James who comes across a magical giant peach and seven magical bugs. Just like Matilda, James lives with mean family members- this time, it's his two mean aunts. James and the bugs have lots of adventures with the giant peach, including crossing the Atlantic Ocean! At the end of the book, the peach lands in New York City, where James lives in a huge peach seed mansion and the bugs get jobs in the city.

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