Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl in 1954, photo by Carl van Vechten"If you are going to get anywhere in life you have to read a lot of books.”"
Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl was born in Wales on 13th September 1916 to Norwegian parents. His father died when he was 3 years old and he was raised by his mother. He had a fairly unhappy time at boarding school which provided some of the inspiration for his later stories.

After leaving school he worked for the Shell Oil Company based in Africa until the outbreak of World War II, when he signed up with the Royal Air Force. Unfortunately he was injured in action and eventually returned home as an invalid. He was then sent to Washington DC to work as an attaché where, almost by accident, he started his writing career. When he was interviewed for an article about his time in action he offered to write about his experiences. His piece was published in the Saturday Evening Post, who signed him up to write more articles.

In 1943 he wrote his first children's book, The Gremlins, which was originally intended to be made into an animated film by Walt Disney. The film was not made and instead Dahl turned to writing adult fiction, not writing another children’s story until the 1960s.

By this time he was a father himself and had started making up stories to entertain his own children. From this came the stories of James and the Giant Peach and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. He went on to write 21 children’s books including Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, The BFG, Matilda, and The Witches, all of which have been made into films. Roald Dahl died on 23rd November 1990.

Roald Dahl Books and Roald Dahl Day
We've got some lovely activities to explore for Roald Dahl Day and while reading or watching Roald Dahl's books or movies.
Roald Dahl Books and Roald Dahl Day

Roald Dahl Printables

Learn to Draw Roald Dahl

Learn to Draw Roald Dahl

Just for fun, learn to draw your own picture of Roald Dahl with this fun step by step tutorial.

Roald Dahl Colouring Page

Roald Dahl Colouring Page

Here's a simple colouring page of Roald Dahl aimed at younger children. You can see he's holding a Golden Ticket for the Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory tour!

Roald Dahl Poster

Roald Dahl Poster

Print this poster - aimed at a younger age group - for display in your book corner or library, or perhaps for Roald Dahl Day on 13th September.

"Every evening after my sister Lucy and I had gone to bed, my father would walk slowly up the stairs, his bones creaking louder than the staircase, to tell us a story. I can see him now, leaning against the wall of our bedroom with his hands in his pockets looking into the distance, reaching into his imagination. It was here, in our bedroom, that he began telling many of the stories that later became the books you know.”"
Ophelia Dahl

Blue plaque for Roald Dahl
Blue plaque for Roald Dahl (photo thanks to Eirian Evans)

Become a Member to access 23,530 printables!