Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Words from children's books | contrast, solitude, happiness

This is the only fiction I read nowadays. Children's books. It's not a complaint, merely an observation. I have my head buried in so many non-fiction titles at the moment – education, creativity, personal growth – and I'm having so many a-ha moments that I'm simply not choosing to find the time for any adult fiction. I know very soon I'll have read enough and want to escape into a good story, but for now I'm enjoying these elevated perspectives.

Instead of Education by John Holt is what I'm devouring right now. Whether or not you have children at school, I urge you to read this. It's relevant to all parents. There are a couple of chapters I didn't care for much, but the rest is as radical as it is simple and fascinating.

Meanwhile, I'm still getting lost as usual in children's poetry, evocative illustrations and their subliminal messages. Can You See A Little Bear shows us a world of contrast through its exotic watercolours – perfect for all ages. Family is everything in Tanglewood, a gorgeous book that has been renewed at the library more than a few times. The Island is quirky but very thought-provoking – the best kind, I think.

Whales can swim and seagulls fly, can you see a little bear flying very high?
Can You See A Little Bear? James Mayhew, Jackie Morris

Deep in the ground, Tanglewood felt its roots stop searching for water. Its bark began to peel, and its leaves turned yellow. 'Is it possible to die of loneliness?' it wondered.
Tanglewood, Margaret Wild, Vivienne Goodman

The people liked how laughing made them feel. Every day they played with the creature, until it left with the sinking sun.
The Island, John Heffernan, Peter Sheehan

More from children's books


  1. Margaret Wild...my favourite I think. x

  2. Happy New Year Vanessa to you and your family. Wishing you exciting times on your homeschool beginnings. I will be joining you in homeschooling for part of this year as in May we hit the road, possibly for two whole terms and are doing a road trip up the east coast all the way to Cape York. Who knows, we may just get to meet in real life along the way! x

    1. Wow! That sounds amazing. Good for you! And yes would love to meet one day! xx

  3. Kids books are just a nice place to be.

    I'd be interested in reading more books on education and encouraging our teachers to do the same. x

  4. I love books for kids. We used to homeschool our kids, now they are all grown up. My daughter is now a teacher and will pass on to her the books mentioned. Thank you.

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Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I read every one. x