my kidlit course

Ika blake at
Thu Aug 19 06:37:22 EDT 2004

Robyn asked:

> I am still looking for recommended readings for 3
> themes: school, monsters (and other halloweeny things like ghosts and
> witches) and fantastic animals. I would love any suggestions you might
> have
> for picture books or novels for younger children.

School: Annie Dalton's 'The Real Tilly Beany' is excellent, though I
recommend it mostly because it's the one single thing that has given me
the most insight into how to be a good teacher, which might not be what
your children want to know! (It's somewhere between a novel and a set of
short stories, and only a few chapters are directly to do with school, so
it might not be suitable unless you set extracts.)

I've recommended it before, and probably will again, but Anne Fine's 'How
To Write Really Badly' is just gorgeous - a novel about someone who's very
bad at academic stuff, with the moral "You just have to suffer through it
for a few more years and then you can go and do something worthwhile", but
without blaming teachers, parents, or other pupils: rare and brilliantly

Love, Ika

'Has Mother Earth become humanity's phantom limb?'
- Paul Virilio
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