Ages 11 - 18
|Nursery & Prep School
Ages 3 - 11
Ted Van Lieshout.
On 21st March, Year 7 had the unique chance in their English lesson to talk by Skype to a highly acclaimed Dutch illustrator and author Ted Van Lieshout. As a class, we had read his charming book ‘The Dearest Boy in All the World’ in which he tells one story in the text and, using the image of a snail, tells a parallel story in his illustrations. An artist by profession, Ted is also a skilful story teller. During the course of our conversation, he answered many of the girls’ questions, including the fact that his father had died when he was eight and that he had felt at the time that he should think how to become the head of the family. In his story, his main character, Tim, is also concerned about how to support his family and spends an entire day seated outside his house in a deckchair and his father’s hat before him, hoping to collect a few coins to start his family account. The fact that we are never told in the book of his father’s death directly is an ingenious narrative trick.
We were all delighted to meet Ted face to face and to see the attic in Amsterdam where he does all his drawings. One member of the class, who felt she shared some of the same feelings as the main character in the story, communicated by email with Ted Van Lieshout and he replied most charmingly to her. His main message to the girls was that if you worry, you may be sure that there is someone with a bigger worry than yours!
The English department, in conjunction with the hard work of our librarian Susan Waller, continues to make the meeting with the people who furnish the curriculum with their wonderful writing a priority.