Monday, 12 November 2012

Book Week at Charlotte's school

I love this! We had a lot of deep discussion about what Charlotte would dress as for her school's Book Week. The school is having an author workshop with Adam Gullain and various book-related activities, with a dress-up day today.

It took quite a while to decide on a costume, and at first Charlotte had pretty much made up her mind she'd go as a princess of some description. We thought "The Worst Princess" or the usual Disney Princess type thing, but we imagined (correctly) that every single girl in her class would go as one.

Then, Charlotte actually came up with one idea which sounded brilliant. She wanted to be Cornelia Funke and Kerstin Meyer's "Pirate Girl" so we thought long and hard about how we could quickly make a pirate costume that ticked all the right piratey boxes without offending anyone.

This is what we came up with - and then Charlotte (bless her) switched pirate allegiances part way through to be "Nugget" from Jonny Duddle's excellent book "The Pirates Next Door".

We've seen quite a lot of parent chat about pirates and the fact that not all parents are that happy about their children running around pretending to be bloodthirsty treasure-obsessed coves. Pirates as children's picture book characters fully appeal to a child's love of anything slightly subversive. They like monsters because monsters are usually quite loud, quite naughty and a bit scary. They love witches because they get away with making spells and turning people into frogs. They love pirates because they sail the seven seas in search of treasure and generally get up to all sorts of capers.

It never crosses a child's mind what a pirate was, or what they still are so it can be pretty irritating when you see the sort of pirates beloved of most children being lumped in with the real and rather nasty bunch.

We had a lot of fun dressing Charlotte up like this and she loved the chance to go to school out of uniform (and wearing some rather fetching pirate make-up too, eek!) The real stroke of genius was the booty bag though, containing enough chocolate coins for all her classmates. Now that really was a brilliant idea of The Strolling Mum's :)

With Adam and Charlotte Gullain's new book just out - The Pirate Pie Ship - I hope Adam likes the costume!

Adam Gullain's Website