Welcome to Stoneydip where everyone is an Octopus!
…Okay not everyone, there is Puffy, Lucy’s cute (yet poisonous) pet pufferfish.
Lucy is an incurably uncool teen, and an octopus. For no reason at all she is very unpopular, and even her parents don’t like her! The only friend who will hang out with her in public is Puffy, her pet puffer fish. But Lucy’s haters don’t know that she is secretly an awesome guitarist, and she has been picked to join everyone’s favourite local band, Lamington Fuzz. While Lucy rocks at doing her own thing, her classmates realise that spending time with the “cool kids” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be…
Delve into the depths of the sea and explore chapter 1 of Lucy the Octopus‘ tragic (yet often hilarious) life below!
Finding Out Your Partner Is Trans
Finding out that your partner is trans can be quite confusing for people, and the responses can vary greatly depending on loads of different factors. The first factor is how far into the relationship you discover this.
For people who know their partner is trans before they get together, managing transition and their identity as a partner of a trans person can be easier.
“I found out when my wife and I got together. She was still living as a man and spent most of the evening trying to convince me that her being trans was a reason for us to not be together. She felt that being trans meant that she could never be in a successful relationship because her transness would always get in the way. I, of course, spent most of the evening convincing her that she was worthy of love and that we could make it work together. To be completely honest, I had no idea what being trans meant, other than being a huge fan of the Rocky Horror Picture Show when I was a teenager (I now recognise how massively problematic Rocky Horror is for many people). I sometimes think that it was this fact, asserting that trans people deserve love just like everyone else without any idea what the practicalities would be, that kept us together. No matter how hard things got, no matter what we went through, it always came back down to the fact that she is deserving of love, and I took it upon myself to prove to her that I was right about that.” (Jo)
When writing the text for What are you staring at?, a graphic novel about restorative justice in a school setting, I couldn’t resist taking a side-swipe at the antiquated system of school detentions, as a repost to the endlessly repeated rhetoric calling for ‘discipline’ to be brought back into the nation’s schools. By pointing out that more often than not, slapping a detention on a young person for wrong-doing is actively counterproductive, I hope to illustrate how ineffective a punitive system is for resolving behavioural issues or engendering self-discipline within a school community. In one of Joseph Wilkins’ most evocative images, our protagonist, Jake, is seen sitting alone in a large classroom. He is serving a detention for punching Ryan, a pupil in the year below, and we see him simmering with anger and resentment at the injustice of it all. At this point in the book, no one has taken the trouble to tease out the story behind his violent behaviour, and because the punishment hurts (as it is designed to) he is minded to take revenge on the very person he harmed in the first place – namely the innocent Ryan – for being the ongoing cause of his pain. Precious little scope there for reflection, understanding, resolution or healing. Continue reading
Cyril Squirrel asks lots of questions, but there’s one thing that really puzzles Cyril…
“What is love? Can I find it? Keep it? Do I need it?”
With a notebook and a map, Cyril embarks on a quest to find out about love.
“Gone away to find out what love is. Back soon.”
Helping children to learn about the ways that love can look, sound or feel, this heart-warming picture book shows some of the many different forms love, friendship and kindness take. Suitable for all children aged 2-6, especially those who may have confused ideas about love, Cyril’s adventure includes guidance for adults on how the book can be read with children.
>>Click here to download the extract<<
In this article, Jane Evans reflects upon her new book Cyril Squirrel Finds Out About Love to discuss how we can help children aged 2-6 learn about the ways that love, friendships and kindness can look, sound or feel in this increasingly complicated world.
It may seem strange to think about teaching children about love and kindness. Surely that’s what they grow up knowing. They feel it every time they are picked up, rocked, fed, and sung to. They see it in the eyes of those around them. They are taught the difference between a kind act and an unkind one once they begin to be around other children. Lessons on sharing and ‘not pushing and snatching’ can become regular and repetitive!
What prompted me to write about Cyril Squirrel going on an adventure to find out about love and kindness was a sense that these simple concepts are getting lost and confused in modern day life. Children can easily come to equate love and kindness with things. We live in a consumer driven world in which parents and carers can feel a real pressure to show children how much they matter by providing material comforts, fabulous toys, equipment and experiences. But is that a great example of love? Continue reading
Ages 8 – 11
A story about a boy named Noah who thinks he is useless at everything but learns that actually he has many talents and that it is impossible to be completely perfect. The story is accompanied by a lesson plan for the teacher which contains questions to ask the class, a list of learning objectives and an exercise to complete after the story.
This extract is taken from Naomi Richards and Julia Hague’s Being Me (and Loving It), which contains 29 ready to use lesson plans designed to build confidence, self-esteem, positive body image and resilience in children at primary school.
We talked to Julia Hague about why her new book Being Me (and Loving It) is such a valuable resource for building self-esteem in kids. She discusses the common self-esteem and body image issues affecting children today, and provides advice on how to support them. Co-written by Naomi Richards (the UK’s number 1 kids coach), Being Me (and Loving It) includes 29 activity-based lesson plans designed for teachers, youth workers, educators and parents supporting children aged 5-11. Continue reading