Posts

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'The Time of the Lion' book review-The most lyrical and gentle story ever written about lions

I have long been a fan of the art of Jackie Morris who has illustrated numerous children's books, including one of my favourite animal books, How the Whale Became, (written by Ted Hughes), short stories about how many animals came into existence. In…
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How to get kids writing with jazz

I'm a firm believer in the power of music as a creative force. I've written before about using music alongside creative writing in order to see where this takes children on the page, as well as the importance of playlists for my novels. Rhythm…
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Why as parents and teachers we must all read aloud to older children

'If speaking is silver, then listening is gold.' Turkish Proverb We all know about the benefits of reading to young children, even from birth. It's been drilled into us as parents and teachers and carers to such an extent you'd be hard pressed…
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Why 'Good Ideas' is a MUST HAVE on every parents bookshelf

I don't very often read how-to parenting books. They can leave me feeling frustrated when I try to put into practice their advice but it ends up backfiring, leaving me with bad-tempered children and wondering where I went wrong. But Michael…
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Which kids' book inspired one man to cycle across the globe?

SuperCyclingMan, currently in Germany I have a friend I went to university with, Will Hodson, who is currently at the start of a five year cycling journey that will take him across all seven continents. And not only that, but he is cycling…
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Fighting back against Kenya's alleged 'non-reading' culture

A couple of weeks ago, I ran a creative writing session in a school with about twenty 10 and 11 year old's. This is the place where I do voluntary work about once a fortnight and the kinds of writing exercises I get the kids to do is received…
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It's all about reading

I love these two little pictures that my daughter drew recently, just because she felt like it. I couldn't agree more, it really is all about reading. I say time and again to the children I work with that my number one tip for being a good…
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Story Cubes: A fantastic gift to ignite a child's imagination

I do so love these Story Cubes. They are perfect to get little imaginations fired up, even from as young as two or three. (My 3 year old always enjoys creating a story after rolling the dice.) A child can tell their own story from start to…
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Have you ever tried Story Jars to get kids writing?

Story Jars A fun, simple idea to try at home. Children can come up with different people, situations and places and write them on slips of paper. Each child will then pick one paper from each jar and - hey presto - they have the beginning of…