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Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Classroom Ideas

Janelle Cox

“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” is an amusing tale that has been entertaining children for decades. This classic story tells the tale about a young boy, Charlie Bucket, who waits patiently for the golden gates of Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory to open. Charlie’s dreams come true when he wins a golden ticket to tour the famous factory along with a lifetime supply of chocolate. This whimsical tale is the perfect story for your youngsters because there are so many fun classroom ideas that you can do with it! Here are a few fun classroom ideas to try after you have read the story or watched the movie.

Classroom Ideas: The Famous Golden Ticket

The chances of Charlie Bucket winning that infamous Golden Ticket were very slim. You can use the following activity to explore the concept of probability with your students. Here’s how to get started.

  1. Label two paper bags “Bag 1” and “Bag 2.” Then, in front of your students, place five golden tickets into each bag, along with 25 white tickets in bag one, and 50 white tickets in bag two.
  2. Invite a student to come up and shake each bag really good to mix the tickets up.
  3. Next, ask students which bag do they think they would have a better chance of getting a golden ticket out of and why.
  4. Explain to students that since bag one has less tickets overall in the bag, their chance of pulling a golden ticket are much greater.
  5. Finally, invite each student to come up and pull a ticket out of either bag. Graph their results on the front board and together as a class analyze your findings.

Innovative Chocolate

Once the chocolate factory was turned over to Charlie, he had some big shoes to fill. Willy Wonka was always known for his innovative candy machines, and was always one step ahead of his competition.

For this activity, challenge your students to come up with their own innovate invention and create a new candy machine. Pair students together or in small groups and allow their imaginations to run free. Encourage students to use a graphic organizer to organize their thoughts, then come up with a sketch of what their machine will look like. Supply a variety of materials for students to construct a sample model of their machines. They can use clay, cardboard, craft sticks, shoe boxes, etc. Also, ask students to write a brief paragraph of how their candy machine works. Once students have completed their projects, have them unveil their machines to rest of the class, and vote on the most creative one. The winner receives a Willy Wonka Chocolate bar or a Golden Ticket that allows them to get out of homework for one day!

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Spoiled Rotten

Veruca Salt was best known for getting her way in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and her famous tagline was “ I want an Oompa Loompa now, Daddy!” Discuss how Veruca and the other three children were spoiled rotten. Ask students what they think would happen if they always got their own way every day of their lives. Then, have students think of three things that they really wanted last year and of they got them or not. Then, ask them to think of another three things they really want now and if these things are the same as last year. Invite students to discuss with their neighbor in a think-pair-share. After discussing these questions, come back together as a class and talk about whether it’s important or not to always get your own way, and why or why not.

Estimating the Everlasting Gobstopper

Students with a sweet tooth will love trying to estimate how many gobstoppers are in the glass jar. Fill an empty glass jar with gobstoppers and challenge your students to estimate how many pieces of candy they think are in the jar. As a twist, have students enter a guess each morning for one week. At the end of the week, ask students to examine their guesses and ask them why they changed their number each day (if they changed it). At the end of the week, choose one student to count the number of gobstoppers in the jar, and another to determine which student gave the most accurate estimate. Then, allow each child to have a piece of the candy and the winner takes the rest of the candy home.

Have a “Wonka-licious Day”

The day before your “Wonka-licious” day, give each student a Golden Ticket and invite them to come to a day filled with fun. As students enter the classroom, they must hand you their ticket and proceed on to the activities that you have planned for them. Here are a few teaching ideas. A lot of these activities can be in the form of a learning center.

  • Come up with a “Wonka-licious” candy recipe.
  • List students’ top ten favorite candy in alphabetical order.
  • Write a short story about the day they received a Golden Ticket.
  • Complete a taste test to compare three different pieces of candy, then graph the class results.
  • Watch the movie “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and compare the movie to the book that you read.

Do you have any fun teaching ideas to contribute for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory? Please share your ideas in the comment section below, we would love to hear what you have to say!

Stephen Clarke / Shutterstock.com

Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds a Master's of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com, as well as a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com and TeachHUB Magazine. You can follow her at Twitter @Empoweringk6ed, or on Facebook at Empowering K6 Educators.