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Posts Tagged ‘World Book Day’

It was World Book Day yesterday. I think I always thought it was on a Friday because our primary school used to celebrate it on a Friday, and my Twitter timeline has been awash with stressed parents sourcing and/or making costumes all the way to last night. If you have googled this post desperately seeking inspiration, I have previously written on both easy solutions and also my most triumphant costuming ie the one I planned more than two days ahead.

But now my little munchkins are large lumpkins and World Book Day costumes are a thing of hideous joyous memory. But we still read books in the Vicarage, obvs. And to help that process, a few months ago I actually started a book club thing in our church.

I decided to start the book club when we took a break from the Church Society book review podcast I had been doing. And I found that (surprise, surprise!) without a deadline I was failing to read any Christian books at all. But the book club was also something I’d had on my heart for a long time and this seemed like a good point to get it going. I have scheduled six meetings a year – one towards the end of every half term. We meet on a Saturday morning for about an hour and I have provided fresh cinnamon rolls as an extra incentive. I decided to go for short(ish) books that people would hopefully read, rather than ‘classics’ or ‘important’ ones.

I have been aided enormously by 10ofThose and their extremely helpful book bundle scheme, which allows you to buy 20 books for £20. Not everyone in our church is a great reader, so the low cost encourages people to give books a go, even if they aren’t used to panic reading 200 pages the night before in anticipation of a podcast recording. And we’re now onto our third book since we began.

The first couple of meetings was just me and Dream, our Families and Community Worker, and the Joker. But last time numbers were up as we met to chat about Stand by Warren Wiersbe and we are praying that this trend will continue. But even if they don’t come to chat about them, people are definitely getting the books and are reading them. We’ve even found that people who’ve not actually read all of (or even any of) the book still enjoy coming to the brunch, not just because of the baking, but because a discussion about the Lord can only ever be a blessing.

For Lent I got a pack of The Forgotten Cross, which has a chapter for each week until Easter. You could even get it yourself and catch up with us. Perhaps you’re someone who is good at reading edifying books, but I’ve found that this discipline of a group has helped me.

Forgotten cross

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The kids eventually agreed to go in the costumes they said they would yesterday morning, although the Queen switched from the purple dress (which had been mine and she said was too baggy) to a blue one of hers (which is now too short and she had to wear with jeggings). And didn’t they turn out lovely? Bit of a pity that the Engineer’s (sorry) Mr Munroe’s eyes are hidden, but he was very tired after two nights away on a school trip. Yay for World Book Day!

Dr Who, Violet Baudelaire and Mr Munroe ready for action

Rather sadly, a good number of their schoolmates weren’t dressed up so a teacher from school and I discussed issuing some suggestions next year – aided by the growing list from Wednesday’s post.

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If you are a parent with a child in primary school, you may today be panicking about World Book Day tomorrow. This is the occasion when many schools encourage kids to come in dressed as a literary character. My three are going as:

  1. Violet Baudelaire from the Lemony Snicket Series of Unfortunate Events. This involves her wearing a purple dress and tying her hair with a purple ribbon. She is currently not keen on wearing the long black wig I bought because it isn’t quite as she imagined Violet’s hair looks (‘too long and curly’ apparently).
  2. Dr Who. Not very literary I’m afraid, but the Joker is obsessed and has been reading the annuals repeatedly. We obtained a second hand tweed jacket for him to accompany his sonic screwdriver and the bow tie he was given for Christmas.
  3. The Engineer’s outfit was trickier, involving the use of fun fur and a sewing machine. He is going as Mr Munroe from the Ottoline stories.

However, for those panicking this afternoon (as I usually do – this year is completely out of character for me), I give the following suggestions of easy outfits to cobble together before the morning, if your children are persuadable, as, alas, mine often aren’t.

  • Roald Dahl characters. Charlie (from the Chocolate Factory) just needs a golden ticket and normal clothes. Or Mrs Twit involves a headscarf and walking stick. George could go in normal clothes with a bottle of medicine and James could take a picture of a peach. Matilda can just take a pile of books!
  • Narnia children who could go in anything looking vaguely 1940s/50s eg shorts and knitted sweaters.
  • Horrid Henry characters (sorry) – Moody Margaret or Henry himself, for example. They will need to wear a scowl.
  • [Late edit] Captain Underpants. All you need is a cape (or piece of cloth) and undies worn over trousers. Would mainly appeal to 8 year old boys.

That’s a few off the top of my head. Any other top last minute outfit tips?

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My three kids are all pretty good readers. The Queen, who’s ten, chomps through literature at a terrifying rate and the Joker (aged nine) loves poems and joke books. The Engineer is seven now and just at that tricky reading stage between picture books and proper story books with chapters. Our series of choice at this stage of reading is by Chris Riddell and begins with Ottoline and the Yellow Cat.

Ottoline is a little girl who lives in an apartment with Mr Munroe whilst her explorer parents travel around the world. Mr Munroe is a creature who comes from a bog in Norway and is covered in long hair. Ottoline likes to solve mysteries and she and Mr Munroe do this successfully in the first book and continue their adventures in Ottoline Goes to School and Ottoline at Sea.

The hardback books are beautifully produced and have a quirky retro style. The black and white illustrations (which have single colour tints) are exquisite. It was the first book that the Queen ever desparately wanted to read again as soon as she’d finished it. The Joker read them over and over, and now the Engineer loves them too. The vocabulary is interesting and includes stretching words like ‘distractedly’, ‘llamas’ and ‘knickerbockers’ (to give a few examples from Ottoline at Sea).

The Engineer has now decided that he wants to attend World Book Day (1st March, when you dress up as a literary character for school) as Mr Munroe. So I am off to Birmingham’s Rag Market on Friday to purchase fake fur. You don’t seem to be able to get a readymade Mr Munroe costume anywhere, curiously enough.

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