Bev and Kev: Years F-2 English

Exploring the 2023 CBCA Short List: Early childhood

The content description links on this page are in line with Version 9.0 of the Australian Curriculum. Use this guide to compare codes across versions.   

Unit writer: Karen Rogers

Text synopsis:  Bev is tall and Kev is small. An unlikely pair! Could this be the beginning of a very big friendship? A heart-warming tale about learning to love yourself and the value of a true friend. Katrina Germein’s text is poignant as Bev tries to find where she belongs, and the use of rare words makes this a perfect story for fledgling readers to enrich their vocabulary - all perfectly coupled with Mandy Foot’s beautifully executed illustrations enticing us to fall in love with both characters and place.

Rationale: Bev and Kev features detailed illustrations which, together with dialogue and familiar text, provide opportunities for students to recognise the thoughts and emotions of the animal characters. As Bev seeks out a place where she feels she belongs, students can examine character interactions through the lens of ‘what make a good friend?’ and ‘is it ok to be different?’. During these discussions, students can relate their own experiences to the text, strengthening their visual literacy skills and personal and social capabilities.

Throughout the text, the characters describe Bev, the giraffe, as big in many ways. Students can broaden their vocabulary and deepen their understanding of adjectives, synonyms and rhyming words when reading, and then directly apply this knowledge in their writing.

Cross-curriculum links: Health and Physical Education; The Arts (Visual Arts; Drama); Personal and social capability; Critical and creative thinking

English concepts: Narrative; Character 


NSW syllabus outcomes S1: EN1-UARL-01 EN1-RECOM-01  EN1-CWT-01 EN1-VOCAB-01 EN1-OLC-01 EN1-SPELL-01

Overarching questions: 

  1. How does the structure of a narrative text help to meet its purpose? 
  2. How do authors show the relationship between characters in a narrative?
  3. How can narratives help us to understand ourselves and others?

Rich assessment task: Students create a written or oral narrative. They create characters and a setting with features that contribute to a problem and resolution. They construct dialogue between the characters that demonstrates their relationship.

Learning intention: Narratives are texts that tell stories


Look at the front cover and discuss the title and illustration. Discuss examples of fairy tales (e.g., Goldilocks and the Three Bears), and/or First Nations stories (e.g., How the birds got their colours).

Key questions:
• Who are the characters?
• Can students think of other stories where animals are the main characters?
• What does the illustration suggest about Bev and Kev’s relationship? Do they look happy or sad? Are they friends or foes?


Ask students to think of their favourite story or recall a story that they know. Design and illustrate a front cover that shows the characters and setting of the story.

Guiding questions:
• Who are the most important characters in your story?
• How can you use illustrations to show the setting of the story?
• How can you show the character’s feeling in an illustration?


Evidence of learning



• identify and describe the importance of characters in a narrative
• make predictions about content and connections between texts based on illustrations
• use illustrations to make inferences about a character’s feelings

Learning intention: Narrative features (including character, setting, problem and resolution) work together to drive the story


Read the text with a focus on its narrative features. Discuss the setting and the main characters. 

Key questions:
What is the problem in the story? 
How did Bev resolve or fix the problem? See pg. 22 onwards where Bev first meets Kev.


Students draw and write what happened at the beginning, middle and end of the story OR students create a puppet show or role-play the story.

Guiding questions:
Which character do we meet first?
What do we learn about Bev at the start of the story?
Why does Bev leave?
How does meeting Kev make Bev happy again?


Evidence of learning


• identify the features of a narrative
• order and retell the key events of a narrative

Learning intention: Images in a narrative help to tell the story

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Complete list of learning intentions covered in this unit: 

  • Narratives are texts that tell stories
  • Narrative features (including character, setting, problem and resolution) work together to drive the story
  • Images in a narrative help to tell the story
  • Narratives have features that are different from other text types
  • Language can be used to express and discover preferences, likes and dislikes 
  • Words can be used by characters to describe features of a person or object 
  • Authors use rhyme and rhythm to engage the reader 
  • Narratives help us to understand ourselves and others