Rikki Tikki Tavi Activities: Teaching Across the Curriculum

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Not only is Rikki Tikki Tavi an engaging story that most kids find appealing, it is also a good story for teaching across the curriculum. The suggestions below will not only build students’ knowledge of science, geography, and history, but they will also strengthen students’ research skills.


The Cobra

In the story, Rikki’s main enemies are two cobras named Nag and Nagaina. Have students research cobras.

Examples of Questions:

Where do cobras live?

What do they eat?

How dangerous are they to humans?

Who are their natural enemies?

What is their lifespan?

The Mongoose

Rikki is a mongoose. Do something similar to the cobra activity above.

Examples of Questions

Where does the mongoose live?

What do they eat?

Who are their natural enemies?

Would they make good pets? Why or why not?


This story takes place in India. Have students research India to find out more about it.


Examples of Questions

On what continent is India located?

What are their main imports and exports?

What religion is primarily practiced there?What are some interesting facts about the Indian culture?

What is the climate of India?


The author, Rudyard Kipling is a very famous writer that is worthy of being researched. Have your students find out about him.

Rudyard Kipling

Examples of Questions

When was Kipling born and when did he die?

Where was he born?

Where was he educated?

What were some of his other works of literature?

What was one major accomplishment is his life?

Another English/Language Arts Activity

While this activity is not “going across the curriculum,” it is another good activity that you can use to teach poin of view.

Point of View

This story is told from a third person point of view. Have your students rewrite the story from a first person point of view. Assign them a character and have them write part of the story through that character’s eyes.

One suggestion that I have used in the past: I put students into groups and assigned each group a character. I then assigned each group a different part of the story. We ended up having the entire story retold in first person, but each part was told from a different character’s point of view. My students read each part to the class. They really seemed to enjoy it.

Some Suggestions of Characters To Use


Teddy’s Mom



Possible Ways to Implement

Assign one topic to all students.

Allow students to choose which topic want to research.

Put students into groups and assign each group a topic. Then have the groups share what they found with the class before reading the story. This would be a terrific pre-reading activity. (This one is my personal favorite.)

These are just a few Rikki Tikki Tavi activities your students might enjoy. An added benefit is that they extend learning beyond the language arts classroom into other areas, such as science and history.

This post is part of the series: Rikki Tikki Tavi by Rudyard Kipling Series

This three-part series will help you teach the story of Rikki Tikki Tavi by Rudyard Kipling to your students.

  1. Understanding the Short Story Elements of Rikki Tikki Tavi
  2. Rikki Tikki Tavi Lesson Plan: Teaching Conflict
  3. Rikki Tikki Tavi Activities: Going Across the Curriculum