Spending my life in the library

Hello, and happy Sunday! 🙂

I’ve been trying to really make a dent on the reading list I have, and have subsequently been spending a lot of time sitting in the corner of the children’s section of my local library. Hopefully I don’t look like a wierdo, despite spending my time browsing the picture books!

I’m currently working as a Teaching Assistant and I’m always praying I don’t bump into any students, as explaining why Miss is spending her free time reading ‘Handa’s Surprise’ on the floor, surrounded by books may be a little awkward.

None the less, I have been really enjoying this part of my course preparation. I always loved reading as a child, but found it less appealing the older I got…I’m not entirely sure why if I’m honest (I’m sure that’s something I’ll need to start reflecting on). I was a huge Jacqueline Wilson fan, and loved how she tackled difficult topics like divorce and bullying, making her stories real and relatable.

Three I've just finished. I particularly enjoyed 'The Boy in the Dress' I'm excited to read more from David Walliams...I'm definitely a fan :)

Three I’ve just finished. I particularly enjoyed ‘The Boy in the Dress’ I’m excited to read more from David Walliams…I’m definitely a fan 🙂

A few new ones not on my list, but I'm trying to take in as many children's books as possible, and not just be limited to the ones recommended by the University.

A few new ones not on my reading list, but I’m trying to take in as many children’s books as possible, and not just be limited to the ones recommended by the University.

A few award winning picture books, and 'Tom's Midnight Garden'. I'm particularly excited to read this as I remember reading it as a primary school pupil, and doing lots of work surrounding the story.

A few award winning picture books, and ‘Tom’s Midnight Garden’. I’m particularly excited to read this as I remember reading it as a primary school pupil, and doing lots of work surrounding the story.

‘The Boy in the Dress’ David Walliams
I was so impressed with this book and can’t recommend it enough. I haven’t read anything else that touches on the topic of gender equality in children and I felt it was a story that needed to be told.  It was funny, enjoyable and uplifting. During the short time I’ve worked in a school I’ve already come across situations where children in nursery may choose to wear non-stereotypical dressing up choices, (we have a boy who loves being Ariel or Cinderella) much to the confusion of other children. I loved how this story enforces the idea of being yourself, and that wearing a dress doesn’t dictate your other interests, your manliness/femininity, or your sexuality.

‘Mr Stink’ David Walliams
Despite also enjoying this book it was definitely second best to ‘The Boy in the Dress’. However it still had that unique hilarity you would expect from Walliams, and I think this made it more enjoyable for me as an adult. One thing I found very interesting was that it seems all of these books are based in the same town, despite all having different main characters that don’t link whatsoever. They all have the local corner shop in common and the friendly owner named Raj. I’m interested to read a few more of his books to see if this continues throughout. If so, this might be a fantastic geography lesson opportunity, where the children could map out the town in which all the books are set.

‘Lola Rose’ Jacqueline Wilson
I originally read this book when I was about 9, and was excited to re-read it and see how my opinion has changed. Wilson discusses some very difficult themes throughout the book (domestic violence, child neglect, low self esteem, anxiety and fear), and my adult brain at times didn’t want the younger me to have dealt with these topics. I think sometimes we want children to be sheltered from the difficulties in life, and rightly so, but for many children this is reality. Because of this, i think it’s important that such issues are addressed. Despite this I quickly fell in love with the book all over again and feel that the themes discussed where done so in an age appropriate way. The story was imaginative, the characters were likeable but realistic and I think it’s important children can relate to the books they read.

If you’ve read any of these books let me know what you think, and if you’ve got any recommendations for me I’d love to hear them.

Well I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Katie a.k.a The Library Loiterer 


4 thoughts on “Spending my life in the library

    • misskatieteaches says:

      Thank you! That is definitely becoming apparent very quickly 🙂 it’s exciting how many activities you can plan around one text, and across so many subjects!


  1. bobtaylor101 says:

    I’ve been told that for an interview at a School Direct programme I’m interested in applying to this autumn I’ll need to read part of a story to a group and then lead a related lesson on it and speak in interview abotu how I might relate it to other areas of the curriculum.
    Going to have a look at the books you mentioned so that’ll be two weirdos browsing picture books!!

    Any ideas on how I can figure what age group a book is good for? I’ve been told waterstones breaks its books up based on reading age but haven’t checked yet…


    • Katie says:

      I’m glad I’m not the only one haha! Oh fantastic, good luck 🙂 what age will you be. Interviewing with? I actually had to do a similar thing for a job interview as a TA. I was working with a year 3 group and chose a poem by pie Corbett. I found it really helpful to have a look at the national curriculum first and try and make the activity relevant to the age group. For example for mine we looked at how we could remember the poem, and decided to act it out with actions, as the national curriculum mentioned the importance of children enjoying reading, and performing written works.

      Definitely look online for guidance too when it comes to finding a book that’s age appropriate. I found that so hard! But there are lots of lesson resources, ideas and advice available if you know the age you’ll be working with. Lastly have you had any experience in school? If so I’d definitely pop back and see if a teacher there can look over your plan and give you tips. I did with mine and it was so helpful! I hope that was helpful. Interviews like that can sound very daunting but I think they’re mainly looking for you to have common sense, have put thought into your activity and most importantly that you work well with the children. I’m sure you’lol ace it! 🙂 feel free to message me if you have any more questions. I’m not sure how much help I’ll be lol but more than happy to try 🙂 Katie x

      Liked by 1 person

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