The Lunch Witch

The Lunch Witch

Book Category: Graphic Novel
Author: Deb Lucke
Copyright: (2015) Hong Kong, China
Publisher: Papercutz
Suggested Grade Level: 3-4
Lexile Level: 380L
Accelerated Reader: 2.9
Suggested Delivery: Independent Read
Common Core State Standard: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.3: Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events
Summary: This graphic novel is about Grunhilda, a witch who is well-known for her and her family’s magical powers and stirring up strange concoctions in a big, black pot. She inherits her ancestors’ recipes and cauldron and soon finds a job that suits her well… a lunch lady. She finds enjoyment in scaring the children and soon discovers a little girl, Madison, who does not really seem to fit in with the rest of her classmates. After the two meet, Grunhilda soon realizes that helping others is going against every evil thing that she once believed in as a witch. Throughout the book, Grunhilda and Madison try to gain back any magic that may have been lost during Grunhilda’s new experience as a lunch lady, and Grunhilda realizes who she really is on the inside.
5 Key Words to Describe the Book: Magical, Humorous, Fairytale, Evil, Engaging
Electronic Resources:
1. This is an article that describes an up and coming comedy based on this book. It describes who will be starring in the comedy, what it will be about, and what viewers can look forward to:
2. This website provides an interesting and detailed interview with the author, including questions such as what inspired her to write this book, what some of her interests are, and if this book had any meaningful connection to her own personal life:
3. This video goes behind the scenes of what it takes to make a great graphic novel, such as this one. The video displays an interview with the author and talks about the approach that she took when creating her first graphic novel:
Key Vocabulary:
  • Amnesia: a partial or total loss of memory.
  • Antidote: a medicine taken or given to counteract a particular poison.
  • Formaldehyde: a colorless pungent gas in solution made by oxidizing methanol.
  • Inoculate: to treat a person or animal with a vaccine to produce immunity against a disease.
  • Invertebrate: an animal lacking a backbone.
  • Squeamish: easily made to feel sick, faint, or disgusted, especially by unpleasant images.
Teaching Suggestions:
  1. Before, During, After-
Before: Students will share what they already know about witches from fairytales, folklore, and popular media such as movies, video games, and comics. Discussion prompts could include those from Hansel and Gretel, The Wizard of Oz, The Little Mermaid, and Harry Potter.
During: Students will complete a Venn diagram as they read. In one circle, they will describe the characteristics of the Ancestors. In the other circle, they will describe the characteristics of Grunhilda. In the area where the circles overlap, they will list the characteristics that the two have in common.
After: Students will be split into small groups where they will share their Venn diagrams. They will discuss the differences among their findings and why they drew different conclusions. They should make revisions to their diagrams and tables based on the discussion.
  1. Writing Activity- Students will write their own versions of a graphic novel. They will write a story based on graphics, pictures, and dialogue. Their stories should have a central theme or message, characters, a setting, and include some form of figurative language. The story should be fiction and some type of fairytale or folklore.
Teacher’s Guide:

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