Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs: Missing Treasure!

by Giles Andreae


Flinn’s school field trip turns into something more than expected when he and his friends follow clues to find the stolen pirate treasure.

Why I like this for a read aloud book:

*Fun illustrations
*Adventure that includes both pirates and dinosaurs!
*Time travel through a cupboard

Family Fun

Captain Flinn calls the pirate dinosaurs “slimy seafaring sausages” and “nasty noodle-brained nincompoops.” He is using alliteration.

*Alliteration is using the same consonant or sound at the beginning of each word or neighboring word. Tongue twisters often include alliteration. Try these Tongue Twisters.

A tutor who tooted the flute
Tried to tutor two tooters to toot
Said the two to the tutor,
“Is it tougher to toot–
Or to tutor two tooters to toot?”

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck
If a woodchuck would chuck wood?
A woodchuck would chuck all the wood;
If a woodchuck would chuck wood.
(I delighted in showing adults how quickly I could spout this particular tongue twister when I was a young girl.)

A skunk sat on a stump.
The stump thought the skunk stunk.
The skunk thought the stump stunk .
What stunk? The skunk or the stump?

*Play ABC Alliteration

Take turns making up alliterations using the alphabet for your springboard:

A – Alligators arduously acting are amplifying abilities
B – Bats buying baseballs bring bad business
C – Caterwauling kittens cling to crepe curtains

Depending on your listeners word prowess, you can require the alliteration to be just 2-3 words long or 5+. It’s more important for the alliteration to be correct than the grammar. It doesn’t need to be a complete sentence and it doesn’t have to make sense. Just have fun with it! (This is a great way to give your listener fun phonic practice–hearing/thinking of words that have the same beginning sound.)

*For more alliteration fun, check out Word Fun in the post for Dog Breath. There are also more alliteration game ideas and tongue twisters at this site.

More Family Fun

*This book has a game board on the back inside cover. Play Snakes and Ladders.
I didn’t have a die handy, so we tossed six pennies. The number of pennies that landed “head” side up, was the number of spaces moved. (You know my motto: Improvise!)

Fun Facts

Here are some fun facts about the history of Snakes and Ladders:

*It is an ancient (maybe even 200 BC!) game from India.
*Its original name was “The Ladder to Salvation”.
*The ladders represented virtues or the good things you did in life.
*The snakes represented vices or the bad things you did in life.
*There were more snakes than ladders because it is a challenge to overcome bad habits.
*Reaching 100 meant reaching salvation.
*The English brought the game back to England from India.
*When the game came to the United States, it was called “Chutes and Ladders”.

Here is a picture of an ancient game board from India:

Reading Reinforcement

*As you read, be sure to use your pirate voice when the pirates are talking!

*Did you notice the shape of the island? Check each page for skulls. You’ll find one or more on each page spread.

*To whom do the peculiar feathers belong?

*How does the illustrator draw the inside of mouths that are yelling or singing? Check out the kids’ mouths as they tumble out of the cupboard. Why do you think the illustrator did that?

*Where did Flinn pick up the spider? Check out Gordon Gurgleguts’ pirate ship. Looks as if he needs a good cleaning service or at least a duster!

*Why would Giganotosaurus NOT want to play the Snakes and Ladders game at the end of this book?


Find this book at your local library or buy it here.