Novel Study – The One And Only Ivan

In 4B we love to read. At the start of the term we began a class novel titled The One and Only Ivan, by Katherine Applegate.

About the book

Ivan is a gorilla who lives at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade with his animal companions. While he is very used to this existence in his domain, he makes a change in his life and the lives of others, with the help of his friends. The One and Only Ivan is a work of fiction that is based on a true story.

Mrs Hembree, a teacher librarian in Seattle, USA, made a fabulous book trailer about The One and Only Ivan. We watched the book trailer before reading the story to tune us into the text.

Our reflections

Here are some of our thoughts and reactions about The One and Only Ivan. Please be aware that our reflections may contain spoilers!


What did you think about The One and Only Ivan? Do you have a reflection to add?

What did you think of the characters in this book?

Were there any special messages in The One and Only Ivan?

Can you recommend any other books that the students in 4B might enjoy?

2 thoughts on “Novel Study – The One And Only Ivan

  1. Dear Miss Jordan and 4B,
    We are reading this book next term in A Room with a View so it was great to see your ideas and thoughts about it – I have never read it with a class although I have seen that many classes really enjoy it, so now I’m looking forward to reading it even more!
    In our class (KS2, 7 – 11 yr olds) we’re reading ‘There’s a Boy in the Girl’s Bathroom’ which is really giving us plenty to think and talk about. We’ve also really enjoyed ‘Cool’ by Michael Morpurgo, ‘Matilda’ by Roald Dahl and ‘Skellig’ by David Almond. Have you read any of those?
    Mrs Monaghan
    A Room with a View

  2. I read all your reflections about this novel and I’m so intrigued that I might need to read it myself.
    Although just watching the trailer brought tears to my eyes so I’m not sure how well I’ll cope with the sad emotions of the story!
    It’s lovely that you have shared novels to enjoy and discuss.
    How do you decide on which books to read as a whole class?
    Katie, Rocker’s Mum

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