To HATE World Book day

(183 Posts)
CurlyRooth Mon 04-Mar-13 13:59:58

I love books, but I truly and utterly, really, really, REALLY hate World Book Day. I just see it as yet ANOTHER edict sent from above (i.e. 'well-meaning' schools) to make our lives as busy working parents the ultimate hell.

And it's the same old, same old every single blooming' year: a smattering of Harry Potters, a few shiny Cinderella's, and many more Where's Wally.

Time consuming, and tedious.

MrsKeithRichards Mon 04-Mar-13 14:05:01

I love it grin

And that's as a 'busy working parent' - sorry!

HeathRobinson Mon 04-Mar-13 14:07:19

My kids hate it too and it doesn't make them read more.

Blu Mon 04-Mar-13 14:09:54

I cannot possibly see how dressing in a bought-in-sainsbury's outfit as a princess or spiderman boosts children's interest in or knowledge of books.

However, DS's school has an actor from the War Horse film coming in to talk to them about his relationship with the book, and they have been reading books to have a debate with other schools about the best book. These are excellent activities IMO.

So it's the dressing up that schools fall back on rather than WBD itself that is the problem.

xigris Mon 04-Mar-13 14:15:38

YNBU! I can't stand it! It's not that I begrudge the children having fun etc, it's because I'm the least creative person on the planet. There was a thread on this very subject a couple of weeks ago with many a parent wailing and gnashing their teeth. A very kind MNetter called Nicklebabe saved me and made lots of great suggestions. Nicklebabe if you're reading this I made a quiver and arrows to go with DS1's Robin Hood outfit. I made it!!!! I wasn't this proud when I got my BSc! grin

SkinnybitchWannabe Mon 04-Mar-13 14:18:43

My dss school don't ask the children to dress up, they just get a £1 voucher.
After nagging me to buy them a very overpriced book from school I showed them how much cheaper the same books were on Amazon and told them they could have two.

LaurieBlueBell Mon 04-Mar-13 14:21:01

I didn't mind until this year. We have a huge collection of fancy dress costumes so it was pretty simple.

We are not dressing up this year, we have to decorate a vegetable as a book character FFS.

MrsKeithRichards Mon 04-Mar-13 14:22:24

Dress a vegetable as a book character?

That's amazing! how on earth did they come up with that one?

moogalicious Mon 04-Mar-13 14:26:08

I love the vegetable idea!

Another working parent who hates WBD. I was totally stressed out yesterday trying to think of outfits for 3 dcs to fit into the school's theme. Until I found out that the younger dc's school has suggested imaginary superheroes, which means they can go dressed as anything!

DC1 is going in own clothes as usual with a tenuous link to a book.

Me too...hate hate hate it...........I rely on ebay for my costumes.

DS going into secondary school this september so really hoping this is the last year I have to endure it.

I dunno, year 6.....I really think they are too old to send to school in dressing up costumes!

xigris Mon 04-Mar-13 14:26:16

Laurie just send in a plain lemon - hey presto! Lemony Snickett (sp) grin

LaurieBlueBell Mon 04-Mar-13 14:27:21

I have no idea MrsKeithRichards but I would kill to be just dressing up. I've got two dc at that school.

LaurieBlueBell Mon 04-Mar-13 14:28:41

Brilliant xigris I am actually going to do that as a protest grin

MammaMedusa Mon 04-Mar-13 14:29:11

Aagggh - just bought a costume from Ebay and it STINKS!!

I actually love World Book Day though, even though it is stressful and I am not creative. The buzz in the playground is great. All the staff at my kids' school dress up, which makes the day, I think.

LightTheLampNotTheRat Mon 04-Mar-13 14:29:54

Love books. Hate WBD with an intense and abiding hatred. Totally and utterly fail to see how those stoopid Disney princess/super-hero costumes make kids any more likely to read an actual book. And I have a nervous breakdown at this time every year trying to come up with something. Grr. The vegetable thing would tip me over the edge I think.

I love it.

DD is going as Gerald the Giraffe from Giraffe's can't dance. We even have the little cricket to sit on her shoulder.

Going to raid TKMaxx later on for DS's! grin

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 14:33:27

Actually, I think you'll find that World Book Day is an event set up by the Booksellers' Association and National Book Tokens in order to get children reading.
It is facilitated by your local bookshops paying out money to get in special £1 books, that the children get a World Book Day token to pay for.

Basically, it means that every single child can have a book once a year, that belongs to them, that they can own and read over and over if they want, that they never have to give back, and that they don't have to worry about being able to afford.

It's not about "yet ANOTHER edict sent from above (i.e. 'well-meaning' schools) to make our lives as busy working parents the ultimate hell. "

It's actually nothing to do with schools
it's your booksellers that started it, it's your booksellers that will get the most out of it, and it's your child that will keep something from it.

LightTheLampNotTheRat Mon 04-Mar-13 14:33:28

See I just don't know where to start. How do you do a giraffe costume? PS I love that book!

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 14:34:00

xigris - thank you grinthanks

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 14:34:32

(and I'm very impressed grin)

LightTheLampNotTheRat Mon 04-Mar-13 14:35:12

nickelbabe the book-token aspect is fab. The edict from (most) schools that kids should dress up is not fab. For me anyway, as a crappy mother who can't do costumes.

poshfrock Mon 04-Mar-13 14:40:34

Laurie - just send a turnip from "The Enormous Turnip". Or if they allow fruit then how about the peach from "James and the Giant Peach".

My DD told me over the weekend that we will be getting a letter home today to tell us the "theme" for this year's WBD which is Friday. So we get the letter Monday pm and have to have a costume for Friday am. THREE days !

I am so not impressed. She has after school activities on Tues, Weds and Thurs so have no idea when the costume is going to materialise. Some notice would have been nice.

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 14:46:21

Lamp - i know, I don't know why they can't just embrace it without having to do the dress-up thing - it means that something so wonderful and clever is turned into a big-hated-by-parents sad

Why can't the schools make it a craft day where they make the costumes (or at least masks or something bookish) rather than expecting the parents to do it?

Just send in a Peach and say it is from James and the Giant Peach!

Blu Mon 04-Mar-13 14:48:23

nicklebabe - getting children into bookshops to spend their voucher - great.
Having a big celebration around books - great.
Dressing up in pink generic princess frocks, or staying up all night making a Willy Wonka outfit - less great.

I got DS to make a badge with said 'SS' on it, make a flat cardboard cut out dog and we fixed it to a stiff wire 'lead' and he went as Peter and Scamp from the Secret Seven.

I have erased the week spent making a home made tie-dyed, anatomically correct (twith thumbs, and a tail stuffed with semi-inflated tesco bags) iguanodon outfit, only to have it discarded at the last minute in favour of an IKEA knights cape and sword, from my memory wine

DeWe Mon 04-Mar-13 14:51:20

Well dd2's something different. She's going as Len Maynard from the Chalet School series. <eyes up brown fabric>

Although they do a prize per form, it's a waste of any effort to get it, as it's done by popularity vote, hence last year the winner hadn't even bothered to dress up as a character confused

Thankfully dd2 is very happy to go as what she wants knowing that almost none of her form and probably most of the teachers won't even have heard of the book.

However I have already lent Dd1's Hermoine costume out-although it's actualll Ginny Weasley this time I believe.

FrenchJunebug Mon 04-Mar-13 14:54:39

YABU you are lucky enough to be a household where children have access to books but this is not the case for most children and WBD is a great introduction to books and reading.

LightTheLampNotTheRat Mon 04-Mar-13 15:31:59

Um, shouldn't SCHOOL be a 'great introduction to books and reading'?

Allegrogirl Mon 04-Mar-13 15:38:54

YANBU. Just spent my day off looking for costume bits for DD aged 5. She's going as a 'girl pirate', minor character from a book she loves (The Pirates Next Door) and at least she'll wear the pirate bits again. She will look fab and just like the girl in the book but no other child is likely to know the character.

Makes a change from princesses and fairies at least.

SDeuchars Mon 04-Mar-13 15:48:32

We used to love WBD (DC too old now) and we never dressed up once.

[smug home educator emoticon]

Smartiepants79 Mon 04-Mar-13 15:48:41

Speaking as a teacher I LOVE world book day. All my staff dress up. It is fun and a good excuse for some off curriculum planning.
School IS a great intro to books and reading BUT reading starts at home and needs to be supported from there in every way possible or school can make very little impact.
I agree about 'generic' costumes but that one is up to parents not school.
I love the vegetable idea. I never really understand why anything that requires a bit of effort from home is often considered to be a 'bad' thing. It is creative, fun and allows them to use their imagination. Just enjoy it!

CurlyRooth Mon 04-Mar-13 16:02:27

nicklebabe - I don't have any beef with the booksellers, book token lot etc etc but actually it IS the school asking kids to come dressed up.

My irritation is with the inordinate amount of stress (and often expense) this puts on some parents. The aims of World Book Day are laudable, but there are ways to get the message across / hand out a £1 book token without it turning into one almighty fancy dress parade.

In my experience it just satisfies and ingratiates middle class competitive parenting (who's got the best costume, who can be the most creative etc etc), and alienates those who don't have the means to create / buy / rustle up a costume - i.e. some of those kids who actually benefit from the scheme.

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 16:12:04

LighttheLamp - it's not just about an introduction to reading - it's about getting children to love books - and this is an opportunity for a child to own a book of their own.
sometimes, the WBD books are the only chance a child has to ever own their own book (either through poverty or parental priority)

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 16:12:36

Curly - yes, but that's the school and not WBD.

WBD is what you said you had a beef with, and that's not fair.

supergreenuk Mon 04-Mar-13 16:21:00

My dd is 3 so it's her first pre school WBD and she hasn't a clue but I'm very excited. I'm dressing her a a character from 'dear zoo' . She will be the monkey. We can go in for the last hour to read books with them. I love being a mummy

Panzee Mon 04-Mar-13 16:24:27

As I said on another thread, most of our pupils come in football kits or pyjamas. Just do that.

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 16:29:52

exactly as Panzee said - you can be anyone in those outfits.

pyjamas - Horrid Henry, Tom from Tom's Midnight Garden, Willie from Goodnight Mister Tom, any child that appears at the breakfast table.
Football Kit - Horrid Henry, one of the Girls from Girls FC, one of Tom Palmer's characters

if you've got DDs and well as DSs, then you could send a boy in a dress, so he could be The Boy in the Dress, or Bill from Bill's New Frock.

AnneEyhtMeyer Mon 04-Mar-13 16:43:20

DD got given the £1 book token today - but it says it can only be redeemed against a book costing £2.99 or more, so it seems the £1 book idea is a thing of the past. I won't bother using the token because I buy DD heaps of books from Amazon.

cleofatra Mon 04-Mar-13 16:51:42

This is so hard for middle kids....the last books mine read were all "normal" characters - diary of a wimpy kids series and suchlike.
BUT they arent allowed to wear "normal" clothes - i.e no doawk, no jacqueline wilson characters etc

cleofatra Mon 04-Mar-13 16:53:17

Oh, and football kits banned from our school when it comes to free-dress days

MammaMedusa Mon 04-Mar-13 16:56:59

AnneEyhtMeyer - I think there are still £1 books as my DD has one after her class went to Waterstones last Friday. I suspect what it means is you buy the specific £1 WBD books or you can redeem against any book which costs more than £2.99.

badbride Mon 04-Mar-13 17:10:38

If it's a PITA, why not have some passive-aggressive fun with it?

Kid: (Arrives at school with a roll of duct tape)
Teacher: What have you come as?
Kid: I'm Christian from Fifty Shades of Grey.

aldiwhore Mon 04-Mar-13 17:20:15

I love the celebration of books... the dressing up, well I personally love the challenge of making a Gandalf and a Hobbit outfit with zero budget, but that's the sort of thing I adore. Plus the dressing up is in addition to general book-love (though admittedly the most stressful part).

YANBU though op though I hate to say it! I'm a busy parent who loves the dress up side, but I will happily sod the housework and work emails after hours to sew, stitch, and glue an outift together... if that's not your thing, I totally understand the annoyance. If you are neither crafty, nor have the budget for a bought costume it does add another level of stress.

On the other hand, many book characters wear 'normal' clothes, though I don't think many children would be excited by that (nor would the competitive parents who want to wow - I could be accused of putting in far too much effort- but by way of apology I ALWAYS attach a note saying I don't wish the outfits to be entered into a competition, because I loathe those sorts of competition).


But the crazy stitchy lady within me hopes that WBD continues. smile Therefore my gut says YABVVVVVVVU.

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 17:25:16


it can be exchanged for a £1 WBD special book or a £1 off a book costing £2.99 or more.

I do know, I'm sitting in a bookshop surrounded by them. grin

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 17:27:18

ooooooooooooooooooooh * AnneEyhtMeyer*
they're the senior school ones - I've just looked at a token I've got here - you're right.

I have to say, I never looked - I can guarantee that your bookshop will give you a £1 book for it.
I didn't even notice it said that, and I can almost guarantee that no other bookshop will have noticed either!

no one said anything about that.

Flossiechops Mon 04-Mar-13 17:28:47

Completely agree op. Dd is going as 'The naughtiest girl in the school' and ds is going as 'Mr.Stink'. On top of this ds has to dress up as a roman soldier the day after wbd. Dd had to be a Viking last week as well as them both having to dress up for comic relief next Friday. We have had to make Viking long boats and roman shields last week too. It's a lovely school but I do think its all too much sometimes!

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 17:29:32

Okay, listen, this might be very important - bookshops do not get any money for the tokens, we basically collect the tokens and give out the books
that means that your bookseller is more likely to give you a £1 WBD book for your GREYISH BLUE token than they are money off a book - I have only just seen this on the GREYISH BLUE tokens.

If you are worried, please ask your bookseller before you set off, but I can't imagine any of them turning your book token down.

nickelbabe Mon 04-Mar-13 17:43:27

i'm rather annoyed with that now.

I've just been ranting and ranting about it to DH.
that doesn't benefit anyone - it doesn't give the senior kids a free book, and it costs the bookseller money!
It doesn't benefit anybody

I've also emailed my National Book Tokens contact to complain about it.

Tailtwister Mon 04-Mar-13 17:48:45

I think it's a good thing, as the voucher can be exchanged for a free book and that can't be a bad thing. I can see how the dressing up can be a pain.

Dressing up a vegetable? Now I've heard it all! What bright spark thought that one up?

Tailtwister Mon 04-Mar-13 17:50:51

That's naughty badbride but I'd pay good money to see the teacher's face!

I'm not too fussed this year, as my dc are re-wearing their fav dress-ups they've had for ages & my eldest is being Tracy Beaker, a total cop-out on my part, but that's who she wanted to be! All i have had to buy so far is one tracy beaker book and a waistcoat. My other two are going as cinderella & redriding hood, complete with the books they already have in the house!

It was a pita last year though, as i wasn't given much notice & i had to rush out & purchase several outfitsconfused, with 3 kids in nursery/school even with cheap stuff it cost me a bomb for costumes/books, so i see exactly why it pisses some parents off.

Turniphead1 Mon 04-Mar-13 18:03:18

I had a moment of triumph at DD2's nursery today. They were telling everyone to look at the poster with the edicts about the dressing up (no princesses, no super heroes shock) - and had great glee in pointing out that she doesn't do Thursdays. Yay.

I have 2 world book day costumes to do as it is. Load of old cobblers.

madamehooch Mon 04-Mar-13 18:06:00

The chain of bookshops beginning with a W have two special £1.00 teen books which senior kids can redeem their tokens against.

Sorry nickelbabe. Doesn't help independents I know sad but at least the kids can get a book.

Lorialet Mon 04-Mar-13 18:12:27

YANBU. I hate it too, but love the vegetable idea! It's not so bad when they're in the infants, but the choice of characters for 9 year old boys is quite limited. DS has said all my suggestions are too babyish.

FillyPutty Mon 04-Mar-13 18:30:56

It's shit. We have spent £50 on costumes, the first one didn't arrive because they were out of stock, so now I have had to spend extra for express delivery.

MrsCampbellBlack Mon 04-Mar-13 18:32:11

I have 3 dress up days for 3 children in the next week and we had one 2 weeks ago - I am so over it.

They'll be wearing whatever I can cobble together and can then vaguely link to some book.

badbride Mon 04-Mar-13 18:42:32

Lorialet Don't wash/ comb DS for a couple of weeks, then send him in as a barbarian king from Game of Thrones grin

Fakebook Mon 04-Mar-13 19:01:05

The vegetable dressing up thing is from Miranda I bet.

Kundry Mon 04-Mar-13 19:01:40

Badbride you are a genius

NewYearsEvelyn Mon 04-Mar-13 19:03:32

School pinnie, witches hat, two plaits, tie with an old fashioned knot in it, few freckles on the nose, broomstick (if available) and a book, covered and marked up 'Book of Spells' and voila...The Worst Witch. A cuddly cat puts the tin hat on it all.

We've done our fair share of Disney princesses, just cos DD liked dressing up as a princess, and we've done the Potter/Hermione Granger thing. I really don't think it gets kids to engage with books. Our school has always done something author-related on WBD so that's o.k. and the dressing up thing is just a chance for the kids to get out of uniform.

So I'm all for it.

complexnumber Mon 04-Mar-13 19:06:53

DD2 decorated a vegetable as Peter Rabbit last year. It looked great but it stank after a month at the bottom of her backpack when it was time to bring it home.

MrsKeithRichards Mon 04-Mar-13 19:07:19

Spending £50 ridiculous

AnneEyhtMeyer Mon 04-Mar-13 19:07:38

Nickel - Well my DD is in nursery (she is almost 4) so it seems she must have been given the wrong token!

Thanks for taking the time to look at this, though. I may try and use it for a £1 book and see if they challenge me!

EndoplasmicReticulum Mon 04-Mar-13 19:10:02

Boys' school are not dressing up this year, but they will be reading a lot of books. Which is more to the point, I think.

I have my costume ready. I like dressing up.

nailak Mon 04-Mar-13 19:11:38

why woul you spend fifty pounds? most of us spend nothing!

soverylucky Mon 04-Mar-13 19:18:57

One year dd went in a dress and a red hooded cardigan - little red riding hood.
Last year she wore a pretty frock and carried a bear - goldilocks. Elder dd went as dorothy from wizard of oz. She wore a blue pinafore with her school blouse, carried a little bag with a toy dog in. I would NEVER spend money on these things.

badbride Mon 04-Mar-13 19:44:54

Kundry grin Am a goldmine of of unhelpful suggestions. Currently wishing I had DC just so that I could send them in to WBD dressed as characters from the classic German storybook Struwwelpeter

MammaMedusa Mon 04-Mar-13 19:47:34


DD has been, for example, the princess and the pea - princess dress she had already, "pea" made of green playdough made stuck onto card and pinned on...

Another year she wore a dress and an Easter bonnet (£1 from pound shop) with a spider made of pipe cleaners hanging from it - Little Miss Muffet.

DS has been Charlie Bucket - own clothes, sash of chocolate cars with a golden ticket in the middle. I think the gold card was 99p.

One year I bought a burglar mask for Burglar Bill which costs £1.55.

£50 is way too much.

MammaMedusa Mon 04-Mar-13 19:48:29

Actually, I meant what soverylucky said! But badbride we are in the middle of reading Struwwelpeter - kids love it!

FillyPutty Mon 04-Mar-13 20:31:23

I spent £50 (for two) because I'm not capable of making costumes, and I didn't want to spend £10 on something crap that would only be worn once, but to try and spend more on something we could use again.

nickelbabe Tue 05-Mar-13 12:32:57


spoke to the director of World Book Day (via my Booksellers' Assiciation rep)

she said:
The book tokens state that they can either get one of the £1 books or get £1 off a book over £2.99. The issue is that there aren't any £1 books for teens as they previously performed the worst and so we now have the app for them- hence encouraging teens to buy a full price book.

Consumers have always been able to get either a free book or £1 off- which is still the case on ALL tokens.”

so, even though the token for teens doesn't say £1 books, you can use them for one.
Quote her if you need to smile

nickelbabe Tue 05-Mar-13 12:35:24

madamehooch - no, no they don't - the 8 WBD books are the same no matter whether you're a chain or an indie.
the books you're thinking of are classed as "11+". so although they will also appeal to teens, they're not actually specifically designed for teens (see comment above)

I still have teen books left over form the last 2 years, and a lot of indies probably do too smile

so it helps us quite a bit! grin

nickelbabe Tue 05-Mar-13 12:36:32

shock and confused
they might have registered late and therefore got the wrong tokens.

still usable though smile

Bakingnovice Tue 05-Mar-13 12:50:48

I love it. The kids get to root around their bookcase and pull outdone books and then we narrow it to a character we can manage to replicate. It doesn't have to cost and it's lovely to spend a Sunday evening painting cardboard boxes, sticking glueing etc instead of homework or tv. It creates memories and you can use it to enhance your child's creative skills. My dc insist on making their own cOstumes and accessories and it usually only costs a couple of pounds worth of paint/ glue/ card from the pound shop. It's really only in primary that they get to do things like this. But I do hate it when you get a days notice!

nokidshere Tue 05-Mar-13 12:53:30

I didn't mind it because our (mine and my boys) favourite book is Charlie Cooks Favourite Book and Charlie cook is simply sat in a chair in his jeans and t shirt - sorted grin

nailak Tue 05-Mar-13 20:32:35

Filly chucking a red hooded jumper and giving dd a basket, or sending a dd to school with a teddy bear is hardly "making" a costume! just creative use of what you already have at home!

madamehooch Tue 05-Mar-13 22:32:47

nickel - we've got 'The Hunt' and 'Girl Missing' as our two teen titles which can be purchased for a £1.00 or by exchanging your WBD voucher.

ZebraOwl Wed 06-Mar-13 01:30:51

DeWe - you don't want brown fabric for Len, that's the uniform in Tyrol, Guernsey & Britain; the Swiss branch are gentian blue... You could dress her as Len during the holidays with a simplish cotton frock though...

We had the Brownies come to a meeting dressed as favourite book characters when we were doing the Booklover Badge a couple of years ago. (Or rather, we gave them the option of doing that or coming in uniform as usual. And the Leaders dressed up too. I spent the meeting wandering about in a white tutu & discovering just how dirty the hall floor was...) We had some incredible-but-simple costumes: the ones that stick most in my mind are The Cat In The Hat (black leggings, black top, white gloves, tail made of stuffed tights, paper hat & a bit of facepaint) accompanied by Thing One & Thing Two (red leggings/tights, red top, pinned-on Thing!sign & incredible back-combed hair with spray-in blue colour). Jacqueline Wilson characters are generally good for getting away with wearing own clothes - mostly girls, but there are plenty of Incidental boys.

I think World Book Day is a brilliant idea, but making fancy dress for vegetables or having to turn your DD into a badger and/or getting next to no notice and/or feeling pressured to meet a certain standard/spend a certain amount is definitely not. Boo to that.

ThatBintAgain Wed 06-Mar-13 10:55:21

Hating it this year, just not organised. Anyone know of a shop selling a red and white striped jumper? I'm not even thinking about what my son's favourite book is, just what crap I can throw together... hmm

fedupofnamechanging Wed 06-Mar-13 11:15:38

I am reusing dd's Halloween costume and sending her as Meg from the Meg and Mog books. Unfortunately, I cannot find the hat, but we have a witch's dress, black tights etc.

nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 11:18:23

madame - they're ones left over from previous years smile
(I'm relived, I thought I was missing out then!!)
I haven't got The Hunt, but I have got Girl, Missing.

nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 11:18:35


nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 11:23:23

ah, now when you say "we" then in that sentence - do you mean you work for them?
in that case, I understand.

Girl, Missing was one of the flip books from a couple of years ago, but I can't find record o the Hunt - so yes, I suppose they must have created their own teen books.
Which is actually fair enough, because there aren't any for teens in the official line-up this year.

MoreBeta Wed 06-Mar-13 11:36:57

I'm just about to endure my last ever World Book Day.

In its original form it was probably a good idea but in reality it is now just a great big book industry marketing excercise. Trolley loads of books get carted into school and the kids get herded in to choose one. I can buy my children books thank you I dont need the book industry to facilitate it for me by way of a fancy dress costume.

This year DS will be Robin Hood - mainly because the costume was already upstairs and he wants an excuse to take a great big sword into school. I stopped him short at an actual bow with a quiver full of arrows though. grin

BiddyPop Wed 06-Mar-13 11:40:05

Our school are in the middle of a 5 week shared reading programme for the lower half of the school (including lots of library openings for parents to help choose books). And they do tend to have lots of reading and discussions about books etc. And links to the 3rd level art college on their campus about books, films etc (Wallace and Grommit animators came to the college, and had a session in the primary school too, last term).

DD wants to dress up in shop bought things for Halloween, but invariably wants a more specific character from a book for WBD. So we've been Willy Wonka (chopped up a purple charity shop shirt I'd bought for material anyway, to form tailcoat, top hat made from card, and gold card "Golden Tickets", with a length of dowel with a handle stuck to the top as walking stick) and the Naughtiest Girl in the School (non-uniform school so I had to buy a uniform for that one - even headmistress still comments on that (nicely) as DD is VERY like Elizabeth Allen, always in trouble but never in a bold way (more asp/ADHD but some Eliz Al traits too). This year, she IS Harry Potter, but in Quidditch outfit - which is HM (own buff trousers, own red top with yellow ribbon safety pinned on, own proper shin guards over trousers, own not good shin guars (no ankle guards) on arms over top, cycling gloves - and I had to sew a basic red robe from leftover curtain material).

LittleMoosh Wed 06-Mar-13 11:43:06

Hate it, they should put a stop to this dressing up in school every year. I have 2 DS and can't afford to buy outfits for dressing up for a day each year! I am no good at creating my own outfits (never been the creative type) so this is a hugh pain in the for me. Plus my eldest (Y6) is quite big for his age so finding a "childs" dressing up outfit isn't the easiest. Boo. The schools should realise that not all parents have the money to make/buy outfits.

Galaxymum Wed 06-Mar-13 12:27:44

Aaargh DD decided at 8.35 this morning she WILL dress up and gave me a Rainbow Fairy book saying "I'm going to be Fern the Green Fairy tomorrow". Mad panic for me to find suitable green outfit. Thankfully found something - but I am glad she did come up with a character from a book she likes and not just a Disney character.

I excelled myself last year as she decided a week before to go as the penguin from Oliver Jeffers' Lost and Found. As you can tell, she's moved on to the dreaded Rainbow Magic books and now nothing else will do!

nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 12:34:51

"In its original form it was probably a good idea but in reality it is now just a great big book industry marketing excercise. Trolley loads of books get carted into school and the kids get herded in to choose one. "

well, a lot of parents can't buy their children books, so forgive me for getting angry with your comment, but you are out of line.

nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 12:35:27

PS - it's not about getting the books into schools either, it's about getting the children into books.

nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 12:37:00

" I can buy my children books thank you I dont need the book industry to facilitate it for me by way of a fancy dress costume."
was the bit i was responding to.

My DS' love to read various books but not that keen on dressing up. DS3 (11) is really into WW II - perhaps could get a 2nd hand uniform from Prince Harry (!) shock

Other than that - stripey tops and go in as Horrid Henry.

Can't be arsed with it and really wish they wouldn't - maybe for the much younger ones only.

MoreBeta Wed 06-Mar-13 13:24:23

nickelbabe - yes yes I know that was the original idea but children can go to a library and as far as I am aware they dont actually give the books away to needy children. Its about selling books pure and simple and the book industry gears up for the event every year.

I have no problem with the original idea - just what the book industry has made it become.

fuzzpig Wed 06-Mar-13 13:30:11

Last year I dressed up as the very hungry caterpillar blush

DD's school didn't do anything last year so I assumed they wouldn't be dressing up this year - found out YESTERDAY that they are! <facepalm>

Obviously pretty limited due to time constraints but DD has opted for the witch from Room on the Broom - DH has made a broomstick and I am copying the animals onto card to stick onto it.

DD is really excited about getting the voucher - I get loads of books second hand from various sources so she virtually never gets to choose a brand new book herself.

nailak Wed 06-Mar-13 14:07:30

needy children get books from other places.

They also do get a free book. you give the voucher and you get a free book.

It is about instilling a love of reading.

nailak Wed 06-Mar-13 14:07:57

our school are doing a book swap, they are selling some of their un needed books for 20p and so on as well as book fair.

Sokmonsta Wed 06-Mar-13 14:25:41

I love the veggie idea too. However as this is my first world book day, with pfb in reception, I'm looking forward to making her the costume she wants.

However, in about 4 years time when I have 4 dc at school, I'll probably be tearing my hair out. At least the twins will always be able to go as topsy and Tim grin

madamehooch Wed 06-Mar-13 14:48:28

The idea of World Book Day is to switch children on to reading. The voucher enabling them to get a free book is one way to do this. The book industry backs this up by publishing the free books. They do not set down how the schools should celebrate World Book Day - this is down to the individual school.

Yes, the idea is that the children should preferably go to a bookshop to exchange their voucher for their free book rather than the schools exchanging mass vouchers and taking the books into the schools. Yes, there is a possibility that the child may see other books that they want in that shop. No, the parents do not have to buy them. They can take the children to the library to borrow the books, thus supporting libraries too.

Aside from the dressing up problems (again, down to the individual schools) I cannot see how exchanging a voucher for a free book can be anything other than beneficial for encouraging a child to start reading something new or for encouraging children to read at all.

nickelbabe Wed 06-Mar-13 14:57:56

"nickelbabe - yes yes I know that was the original idea but children can go to a library and as far as I am aware they dont actually give the books away to needy children. Its about selling books pure and simple and the book industry gears up for the event every year."

yes they do. they give the books away to anyone who has a token

why don't you go to and learn a bit about it?

the whole point of the token is that every child can have a book no matter how much money they have or haven't got

every child gets one because then every child is given the same opportunity to own a book of their own. And it means that no child is singled out as "needing extra help"

It's not the same as going to the library - I've just had athe head of one of our special schools in to collect some books - most of the kids at his school are looked after - that means that tehy don't live with their own parents, and they probably feel like nothing belongs to them.
the token means that they get to own something.

When I visited the school last year, we made them write their names in to the book they chose, because it was the best way to demonstrate to them that it was their book, that they owned it and that no one was going to take it back.

You surely don't have to walk a mile in someone else's shoes to see how this is a good thing?

nailak Wed 06-Mar-13 15:01:06

my dds nursery did do a mass exchange of tokens for books one year

madamehooch Wed 06-Mar-13 15:38:46

Here here nickel

fledtoscotland Wed 06-Mar-13 16:23:32

For older primary school children I think it's great but DS1 is just 5 and really doesn't understand why he's dressing up tomorrow. That and Fair Trade week at school, it's all a bit over his level

lirael Wed 06-Mar-13 16:35:50

DS1's secondary school have decided they want the kids to dress up - aaaarrrrghhhhh! It's optional, and having said he wouldn't dress up he announced at 9pm last night that he'd quite like to go as Skullduggery Pleasant....

Luckily we have a local fancy dress shop who supplied me with a mask and cheap trilby - 'Oh you're the second Skullduggery we've had in here today' grin. Blazer with patch over badge, DH's purple wedding tie, black trousers - done.

cupcake78 Wed 06-Mar-13 16:40:07

It's a very big pain in the arse!

Ishtar2410 Wed 06-Mar-13 18:35:26

Change of head teacher has meant that we had plenty of notice this year (not the usual couple of days hmm). In previous years it's been a panic, but we have had a chance to plan this time.

DD (8) is going as a character from Terry Pratchett's Wee Free Men and DS (3) is going as Schnitzel von Krumm (!!) from Hairy McLary.

I don't mind dressing up days if there is plenty of warning.

nailak Wed 06-Mar-13 20:52:29

how can you be too young to understand you are dressing up as a character in a book?
my ds is 2 and when my mum came round earlier and started asking dds about their costumes he ran to get his pirate sword, that he is going to be dressing up with tomorrow.

and fair trade week? you can explain it to a child on their level!

For those too useless busy to have sourced a costume, I have devised the world's easiest world book day costume plan. It involves dressing up as characters from (or just generic faction members) from veronika roth's divergent. You almost certainly have everything required for at least one faction in your house already.

There are 5 factions each with a different dress code.
Abnegation: grey, baggy, shapeless clothes.
Amity: red and yellow clothes.
Candor: black trousers/skirt and white shirt
Dauntless: black clothes, optional fake tattoos, piercings and stupid coloured hair. Two of the main characters are dauntless with no piercings or coloured hair, so you can get away with a black shirt/hoody and black jeans/leggings
Erudite: blue clothing (including jeans). Optional thick rimmed vanity glasses.

It's world book day for lazy people. DS1 (who is in Y8 and still has to dress up) is going as an erudite character (caleb prior). Planning involved looking in his wardrobe and confirming that he has plenty of blue clothes to choose from.

Sure, the book's written for teenagers. But you can pretend your 5 year old is just really advanced. grin

bequiasweet Wed 06-Mar-13 21:20:32

So 2 hours ago, DD announced I needed to give her £8 for tomorrow for the book and signing (!) yeah right.
In addition, major agonising over tomorrow's costume. DD (10 y.o) Wanted to go as a St Trinians girl - she has NOT read the books - luckily, the only school skirt she has, she can't get into now, as it's about 3 year's old! And we seem to have lost her 'long' socks. So the latest wheeze is Lady MacBeth, which I think we can just about do with judicious use of red felt-pen all over her hands!

whateveritakes Wed 06-Mar-13 21:43:14

Just use the Victorian outfit from their history dressing up day to be Oliver Twist or the World War 2 outfit to be any generic 1940/50'd schoolboy/girl.

I did push the boat out once and do a hedgehog costume. The faux fur throw from the sofa with lots of wooden pegs attached to look all spiky. Cardboard black nose on elastic.

lirael Wed 06-Mar-13 16:35:50

>>>> he announced at 9pm last night that he'd quite like to go as Skullduggery Pleasant.... <<<<

That's what our DS, age 9, has decided to do. Fortunately between us we have all the necessary bits (my scarf, DH's mask & hat, the rest DS has).

DD (6) has decided to go as Winnie the Witch. She has a blue pinafore and top and some stripey tights, she (and DH!) are making the hat, and she's borrowing my purple cardigan. She may need to make a cardboard Wilbur though, despite a skip full of cuddly toys neither child has a black cat. grin

someoftheabove Wed 06-Mar-13 22:16:39

I've just started working in a new school. It's a lovely school, but all the teachers dress up for WBD and I really don't want to because I walk in to work (2 miles). And I don't work in the classroom. Not sure if I feel brave enough to rebel at this early stage!


You need a character who works on a farm or something. grin

What about Peter from the Malcolm Saville Lone Pine series? She spent lots of the stories in horse riding gear. Or someone from the Pullein-Thompson sisters, they were horsey ones, weren't they? Just find a character which has the same hair colour as you and you're sorted. smile

multitaskmama Wed 06-Mar-13 22:46:01

I am not creative at all but luckily my son wanted to go as Dennis the Menace. I've been sewing on red stripes onto a navy top (couldn't find a black one) BY HAND this evening. Don't have a sewing machine so have sewn each one by hand. I am knackered - off to bed :-)

multitaskmama Wed 06-Mar-13 22:47:22

I was dreading it but secretly proud of myself and my son is very happy with his top adn black trousers made into shorts. Oldest son is going as James Bond. Just need to gel his hair in the morning - off to bed for real this time ! :-)

lastSplash Wed 06-Mar-13 23:26:08

I hated it. DS' school didn't get round to giving out the tokens 2 years running (and then didn't have any left when I asked), so basically it was crap dressing up and nothing to do with books.

Trips to the library with school would have been great. Lots of other possibilities too...

I may have remembered wrong, but aren't many of the special £1 books just extracts? I don't think they seem to be substantial enough / stand alone enough to live up to the idea of WBD rather than be a cheap promotion for a longer book or a prolific author.

SE13Mummy Wed 06-Mar-13 23:47:13

During this week every child at my school has been on a class outing to a local independent bookshop to spend their £1 WBD voucher. It's a free trip, which results in every child going home with a book that belongs to them. The school is holding a poetry show during the day and, next week, an author is coming in to work with each class.

Children have been asked to dress up tomorrow but lots of discussion has been had about characters who wear ordinary clothes e.g. Matilda (school uniform/own clothes), Tracy Beaker, Pippi Longstocking, James (of giant peach fame), Wally (bobble hat & glasses), Tintin etc. The children are excited about it and it doesn't have to cost anything provided enough notice is given.

My own DCs' school just ignores it.

amazingmumof6 Thu 07-Mar-13 00:23:26

my 8 year old is in year 3 and just had his progress reports - he's reading is on a level expected for a year 5 pupil, which is better than the SAA (significantly above average), so they came up with SAA+

he doesn't care for book day as he hates dressing up

vouchers don't work for us either, as I don't have time wondering in the shops for books with them after school!

we have tons of books by the way, most of my kids love reading (DS2 is a bit lazy..) so for us book day is just pointless

(I think it is a very patronizing thing to "point out" that books and reading are important, to me both are obvious...)

amazingmumof6 Thu 07-Mar-13 00:27:08

and DS4 (6 years old) is going to decide in the morning whether he is going as Anakin Skywalker or Indiana Jones, because he can't get dressed as the Guinness Book of Records 2013, which is actually his favourite book right now grin

DS2 has gone to nursery as darth vader. He has a darth vader dressing gown on. He's taken a Star Wars book with him as evidence (he insisted).

DS1 is all in completely normal blue clothes (blue chinos, stripey blue and white tshirt, blue jumper) and quite happy. I think he was worried that no one else would dress up and he'd look like a freak (at 12/13 this is a fair assumption, I guess, even though he did get a letter home about it). So he just looks like it's wear your own clothes day and looks unremarkable.

KirstyJC Thu 07-Mar-13 09:01:42

I am planning to send DS1 in tomorrow with filthy clothes and a copy of Mr Stink. grin

nailak Thu 07-Mar-13 09:16:28

ok if pointing it out is patronising, how about celebrating it? encouraging a love for it? sharing the love with others?

I used to love taking my books in to school and sharing it with others

ll31 Thu 07-Mar-13 09:16:48

you dontvhave to buy costumes tho, see poster above re football kits, pajamas etc.. old white sheet-toga or mummy.... and i dont have any crafty ability... surely its to help kids assoc reading with fun, see it as a good thing etc... for the poster whose xhikd doesnt want to dress up, send him in own clothes and he can be any amt of charactera or none... think lots if people on this thread sound overly miserable about it tbh

jes73 Thu 07-Mar-13 10:14:24

I love it - I love books and its great that there is a day dedicated to books

I have written a poem about it it and let me know what you think of it

LifeIsBetterInFlipFlops Thu 07-Mar-13 10:27:40

It's all part and parcel of having kids...and they love it.

NotTreadingGrapes Thu 07-Mar-13 10:31:35

Parents who seem to get more out of it than the kids are just bonkers reliving their own Easter bonnet days I suppose.

Doesn't make it right.

And as I said on another thread, when I see statistics that show Junior picks up a book and not the wii when he gets home because he's been running amok dressed as Ron Weasley all day, then I'll stop being cat's-bum about it.

Not all kids love being looked at either. Dd would be horrified.

fuzzpig Thu 07-Mar-13 10:40:35

I've had fun this morning - we were really struggling to think of an idea for DS (3, but with a severe speech delay) and in the last hour we've thrown together a Highway Rat costume with his smart clothes (from a wedding), a binbag cape and floppy hat, and a hobby horse made with an old amazon box and a garden cane. Feel quite chuffed with myself but it is just luck that I'm off work today and have had time to do it.

But mostly hearing my little boy saying "I 'ighway wat" over and over again and getting all enthusiastic about something I actually didn't think he'd understand due to his communication problems, is actually making me melt. smile

pollywollydoodle Thu 07-Mar-13 11:22:01

love the decorate a vegetable idea!
i would do "the pak choi in a dress "...don't know what dd would do though grin

TheOriginalLadyFT Thu 07-Mar-13 11:41:11

Sorry, I love it so YABU

We're both very busy working parents but, as DS had (for once) given us plenty of notice) I bought some bits and bobs from ebay and amazon and DS has gone as a soldier from War Horse

He looks mint, if I do say so myself grin

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 12:03:22

"I may have remembered wrong, but aren't many of the special £1 books just extracts? I don't think they seem to be substantial enough / stand alone enough to live up to the idea of WBD rather than be a cheap promotion for a longer book or a prolific author. "

no, they are full stories (so short stories if you like)
mostly specially produced for the event.
they aren't promos for larger books, but they are often "in the same series" to encourage readers to read more.
and some of the WBD stories were incorporatwed into later editions of one of the series (the Malorie Blackman

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 12:04:06

the malorie Blackman one - an eye for an eye - was put into later editions of noughts and crosses as an extra chapter.
but it does stand alone.

landofmakebelieve Thu 07-Mar-13 12:09:02

DD got given the £1 book token today - but it says it can only be redeemed against a book costing £2.99 or more, so it seems the £1 book idea is a thing of the past.

Seriously? That's outrageous. Surely the whole point of getting a £1 book token means people can get a book for free?
At our school, everyone gets a £1 book token, and there's a selection of £1 books that they can choose from, so everyone gets a free book.
Pretty crap of yours if they say it can only be redeemed against another book!

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 12:47:46

"(I think it is a very patronizing thing to "point out" that books and reading are important, to me both are obvious...) "

really? fucking really?
well, then come to my fucking town and tell some fucking people here how fucking obvious it is.

Many children in this town don't own a book, and many can't afford to own a book.
Many parents can't read,and many parents also don't place any importance on reading at all, hence a large proportion of children never being heard read at home.

Now, tell me why, if everyone knows how fucking obvious it is to read, have I had to take the final decision this week to close my independent bookshop because fewer people are buying books than I've paid for?
tell me why when I get people coming into my shop 5 years after I open, who say "oh, I never buy books, oh no one reads any more fo they? oh, kids watch telly and play games now and don't read"
now tell me how fucking obvious it is that reading is important.
Go on, fucking tell me - then maybe the next 7 months can be spent saving my business instead of winding it down.


nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 12:49:40

landofmakebelieve - please read my reply to er post - the director of World Book Day has told me that that token can be used for the WBD books too, don't panic!

Snoopingforsoup Thu 07-Mar-13 12:57:25

Our school give a theme, so we don't see many Darth Vaders.
They then do some literacy work related to the theme. DC LOVES book day, one of the highlights of his school year. Sorry.

MyDarlingClementine Thu 07-Mar-13 13:09:08

I think its charming. All the kiddies were super excited this am, an air of frisson rippling through the play ground as they lined up, a teacher witch walked by and they were all twittering....

so cute and brightens up the day for them, after monotenous tedium.

shame you cant appreciate that op!

goldenlula Thu 07-Mar-13 13:21:24

It was lovely seeing all the different characters in the playground this morning. My two went as Horrid Henry (blue top with yellow felt stripes stitched on) and Peter Pan (black leggings we use for extra layers under clothes in the snow and a green t-shirt zig zagged on the bottom and sleeves).

landofmakebelieve Thu 07-Mar-13 13:48:09

landofmakebelieve - please read my reply to er post - the director of World Book Day has told me that that token can be used for the WBD books too, don't panic!

Oh good, didn't see that bit, sorry. I'll calm down a bit now then, grin

landofmakebelieve Thu 07-Mar-13 13:52:46

*Many children in this town don't own a book, and many can't afford to own a book.
Many parents can't read,and many parents also don't place any importance on reading at all, hence a large proportion of children never being heard read at home.*
*tell me why when I get people coming into my shop 5 years after I open, who say "oh, I never buy books, oh no one reads any more fo they? oh, kids watch telly and play games now and don't read"
now tell me how fucking obvious it is that reading is important.*

This post makes me feel really sad. sad
As a huge reader myself, I find it incomprehensible how some parents just don't want to read, or indeed can't.
Sorry to hear about your shop. To the person who cam in saying "nobody reads any more, do they?" I couldn't disagree more.
We do. My kids (9 and 5) love reading too, and are always getting new books.It's attitudes like that person which succeeds in closing down bookshops.
(Wish your bookshop was in my town, I adore bookshops and lose hours in them!)

landofmakebelieve Thu 07-Mar-13 13:53:20

Doh, bolding post epic fail hmm

Someone was looking for evidence that world book day inspires reading over videogames... Well DS1 came in from school today and started reading his book. He usually comes in an asks if he can play in his Xbox. So perhaps dressing up made him even keener to read.

Disclaimer: he reads loads anyway. His form teacher complains that his nose is always in a book, and he tends to read for over an hour before bed each night (usually closer to 90 minutes, sometimes more).

Ginebra Thu 07-Mar-13 17:09:33

Im underwhemed by a €1.50 book token.

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 17:15:20

thanks Ginebra that's exactly the problem we're facing.
Go and exchange it for one of the special E1.50 books!

It will give you money off any book you like or a free small book. I don't see how this is such a terrible deal.

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 17:17:27

exactly! it's fucking free.

(and paid for by your local bookseller, not the gevernment)

Ginebra Thu 07-Mar-13 17:21:07

No. My kids get much better books thru the school library. id rathervgive 14 euro to the school library than be manipulated into spending money. in fact i might do that. its such a load of shite. my ten year old read the help after me last year. a one fifty book token isnt going to make any child a reader if reading isnt their thing. we have no games or wiis or xboxes here. doesnt mean i fall for this wbd hokey!

No one will force you to use it!

As I said, it will give you money off a book or a free small book if you want it. Otherwise, you're under no obligation to use the token.

fuzzpig Thu 07-Mar-13 17:30:38

I could be underwhelmed by a £1 token, but I still use it and appreciate it. My DCs virtually never get new books as I work in a library and also get a lot from charity shops. I am lucky enough that £1 isn't a massive deal, but it's symbolic - it's a chance for the DCs - who are too young for pocket money - to go and choose their own book and hand over their own voucher, whereas usually mummy is still in control of all their reading material (apart from DD's school reading book) blush

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 17:30:49

fine, give 14euro to the school library.

But there are plenty of children who don't have anything.

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 17:31:37

it's not fucking hokey!

Jesus, please understand, it's a way to give every child a fucking chance to own a fucking book.

To be honest, I just see the token as an excuse to buy another book for me to steal from DS1 and read. Because, you see, there's money off and everything. It would be a shame to miss out. Of course, if there weren't money off, I'd probably buy one anyway.

DS2 went on a nursery trip to waterstones and spent their tokens on a world book day book of their choosing. He loved it. And he was so keen completing his giraffes's can't dance activity book the next morning.

nickelbabe Thu 07-Mar-13 12:47:46

>>>> I had to take the final decision this week to close my independent bookshop because fewer people are buying books than I've paid for? <<<<<

So sad to read this. I've loved hearing about your shop, even though we're nowhere near you. I hope you get a miracle and are able to save your shop. sad

fuzzpig Thu 07-Mar-13 18:11:27

Same here MM - have been wanting to travel down and spend loads of money in visit the shop for ages, but am too unwell to travel ATM. Nickel, I'm really sorry to read this and I hope something happens to turn it around. sad

It really amazes me that some people can't understand that some children have no access to books at home, and that something like a free WBD book can possibly make a difference. I love the sound of a nursery trip to spend vouchers together - could really be beneficial to children whose parents may not be able to, or want to, take the child to the shop themselves. At the library we have visits from schools all over town and a huge amount of the children have never set foot in the building before (of course that doesn't mean they don't read or have access to books - although it is certainly true for some)

As an aside I think my 3yo will want to sleep in his costume tonight smile

Ginebra Thu 07-Mar-13 18:21:32

Look im not wandering around trashing wbd, havent given it any thought. but i bet on saturday i see all the mc parents in the bookshop buying hugo and dulcie more books. great! seriously. what i would love is if they could give a 7 euro book token to a child who doesnt have any books at home. and i bet the schools know which kids need to be given a taste for books. it makes no difference to my kids!

Ginebra Thu 07-Mar-13 18:23:58

Imagine if they had world wine day and gave the mums 1.50 off a bottle of blossom hill!!! anybody else seeing blossom hill adverts?!

redandblacks Thu 07-Mar-13 18:41:31

You can always tell the parents who don't really read books with their children (about half at our school). Their children turn up in flamboyant, TV character outfits which are not remotely relevant to the celebration. Happens every year and many of their children are none the wiser either ... on a different note, there are tasteful ways of dressing up for the older kids; no need to squeeze an eleven yr old into an Iggle Piggle costume meant for toddlers. I don't think a days dressing up has anything to do with cultivating a love for books. Nothing whatsoever.

sittinginthesun Thu 07-Mar-13 18:44:23

Nickel - that is so sad! Are you seriously losing the shop?

Our independent book shop has had to diversify a lot. They have however managed to arrange a brilliant annual book festival - would that help at your end?

fuzzpig Thu 07-Mar-13 19:02:25

DD was one of the only ones in her class not in a superhero/Disney princess outfit. But I don't get the impression that they have no access to books. I assumed they just chose a Disney book or due to having 2 days notice didn't have time to choose something else.

I'm sure when I was a kid we all dressed as book characters and not TV characters on WBD.

We don't have an independent bookstore round here - wish we did.

IWantAnotherBaby Thu 07-Mar-13 19:20:34

I completely love it. DS went as High King Peter from the Narnia books last year (aged 8), but had moved schools this year and they didn't dress up. They had an author visit instead. DD (5; in reception), loves one of my childhood books - Richard Scarry's Great Big Schoolhouse, so went dressed as the teacher from that (Miss Honey - a bear) complete with a toy Lowly Worm that I made to go with it. None of the children had a clue who she was, but she didn't care. Most of the teachers remembered the books from their childhood, though.

Most of the other children were pirates, princesses, spiderman etc.

We have thousands of children's books, but the £1 books for WBD are brilliant and we usually get them all. I think the whole thing is a great idea and I get quite carried away!

sittinginthesun Thu 07-Mar-13 19:20:41

Oh, and FWIW, I love World Book Day. Local bookshop has tied it in with a children's festival, we're having authors visiting school this week, dressing up tomorrow - currently have a pair of Little Cats, reading to each other, trying on their outfits. (Probably completely outed me!)

FossilMum Thu 07-Mar-13 19:22:06

The problem is clearly the unimaginative, idiotic inability of so many schools to do something properly related to enjoying books, stories and reading on WBD.

Author visits - fantastic!
Reading some really good stories to the children - great
Encouraging the children to write stories of their own - brilliant
Getting children to bring in their favourite books, then reading out extracts from them - good
Providing an opportunity for children to spend their free £1 book vouchers - wonderful

But getting them to dress up - not very inspiring, esp. with all the other dress-up days they already inflict on beleagured non-creative parents why oh why don't they get the kids to make them at school FFS have. DS's school, thank heavens, didn't do dressing up this year. They appeared to be getting it right. They had a 'book fair'. However, when we showed up, none of the £1 free books were available at said fair. They also got the children to bring in their favourite books. Sounds good. DS is in Reception; most of them can barely read. They were told to read the books quietly to themselves for a few minutes. By his account my son gazed at the pictures a bit then reverted to thinking of Lego. I'd hoped the teacher would read out a few inspiring examples, but, oh, no, they didn't have story time today at all. Aargh!

Well most superheroes are comic book characters. DS2 loved showing everyone at nursery his Star Wars book and telling them all the details. The staff remarked that he knows an awful lot about it! They'd done dressing in bright colours for an alien tea on planet zum zee yesterday, but he still insisted on donning his vader dressing gown this morning.

We have hundreds of books at home, but my kids are still likely to want to dress up as something ridiculous (darth vader in DS2's case). DS1 wanted to be a character from the manga series bleach but it would have involved ordering stuff from china. I told him he can do that for Halloween. He's always reading actual books, but he still wanted to go as something that probably shouts 'family of non-readers' to those who don't know this. Oh well.

I think dressing up as characters from books can help to fire children's imagination and help them to see why they might enjoy reading. They get to see all sorts of characters from books and talk about who they are dressed as and the book in general. It's unlikely to put them off.

DS1 has just gotten ready for bed (yes, he's 12 and it's only 7.30) and has done a celebratory dance because I told him he has an hour an a half to read before lights out. He is super keen on finishing the book he dressed up as a character from. As he'd been talking to a friend at school (who has read the book) about how great it is, etc. It hasn't turned a non-reader into a reader by any stretch of the imagination but the whole dressing up for world book day has contributed something to his enthusiasm for reading.

There's an absolutely brilliant children's book store in the seven stories in Newcastle. Unfortunately, the seven stories (which is generally great) is currently at risk because the city council can't afford to fund it any more.

(For anyone who is in Newcastle, there's a WBD event on this weekend with the illustrator of giraffes can't dance).

sensesworkingovertime Thu 07-Mar-13 19:46:56

I posted the OP last year, such was my hatred of World Book Day. Here's my main reasons -

1) It's one more thing to add to my list of 'shite to remember'
2) It's costly - seems to cost me at least £8 to £10 pounds every year on a costume
3) Time consuming - buying or making said costume
4) Last but by no means least - the endless kids and adults who just dress up as any instantly recognisable character THAT IS NOT A BOOK CHARACTER, IT'S A FILM OR TV CHARACTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My DD told me that a female teacher dressed as Shrek today!!!!!!!!!!!!! Aaaaghhhh, since when is SHREK a book???????

And the news today is the local councils are closing loads more libraries to save money - HAPPY WORLD BOOK DAY - i'm off to find a quiet dark room...

FossilMum Thu 07-Mar-13 20:16:44

ArbitraryUserName - great to hear how dressing up can actually inspire reading and talking about reading
why don't they get the CHILDREN to make their own props as a craft activity AT SCHOOL, and talk about why they want to be who/what they want to be while they're at it, rather than just expecting the parents to buy/make an outfit at home, which is what usually happens in practice (esp. with younger children or with short notice)?

cleofatra Thu 07-Mar-13 20:23:47

I had no idea world book day involved tokens of any sort. They haven't been mentioned at all at our school.

ArbitraryUsername Thu 07-Mar-13 19:37:15

>>>>> There's an absolutely brilliant children's book store in the seven stories in Newcastle. <<<<<

Agreed, that's fantastic. We like to have annual passes for there but can't afford them again until I get a proper job. sad

>>>> Unfortunately, the seven stories (which is generally great) is currently at risk because the city council can't afford to fund it any more. <<<<

I didn't realise they were at risk too. shock And haven't they just been granted the title of National Centre for Children's Books?

Yeah, I saw that. Hopefully that'll replace the council funding entirely. It is an absolutely brilliant resource, and does loads with just about all the local schools.

amazingmumof6 Fri 08-Mar-13 13:57:52


I'm sorry your business is in trouble, but why are you swearing at me?

to me it is obvious that books ad reading are very important, so I find it offensive to be told about what I know and practice already especially when it means the hassle of yet another stupid dressing up day....

my kids hate dressing up, but love books, so for us it is a pointless annoyance.

it is exciting and useful for others no doubt, but I can only vouch for my opinion. or am I not allowed to have one?

nickelbabe Fri 08-Mar-13 14:26:53

I think it might have been obvious why i was swearing at you - you were being facetious and trying to make out that because you know how important books are, then surely everyone else must too.
Don't start taking offence at the swearing, because what you said was way worse than the worst swearing on the planet - you're basically saying that everyone is as privileged as you and as such, quite obviously don't deserve what we're trying to do for them,.

Bakingnovice Fri 08-Mar-13 15:24:12

Nickelbabe I really hope your shop survives. Pre- dc I spent many hours in bookshops just touching and feeling books. Smelling them. Browsing. Books weren't escapism from a difficult childhood and I'm
Sure it's my escapism into books which made me an academic high achiever. However, I have to accept my share of responsibity for the closure of shops like yours. I swore I'd never ever own a kindle. But I do and I love it. I buy the kids books online as its cheaper and we don't have an independent book shop in our city. Even if we did with 3 dc I'd probably still buy online as its cheaper. I just feel so sad at the decline in bookshops like yours and wish you all the best.

Bakingnovice Fri 08-Mar-13 15:24:45

* b

Bakingnovice Fri 08-Mar-13 15:25:23

* books were my escapism.

I love the concept of WBD. I just wish the execution of it by schools was more about ... erm... reading actual books!

The pre-school teachers said my children were the only ones to bring the book with in them! I am a naive mother of pre-schoolers and made the mistake of thinking it was supposed to be more about the book than the costume. Clearly mistaken!

The costumes were a serious pain though. My only comfort is that my kids genuinely love the book and are fascinated by the characters they dressed as (Burglar Bill and Burglar Bettygrin). If I have to suffer for my art, at least it is art with meaning attached.

nickelbabe Fri 08-Mar-13 18:26:40

one book a year is all it takes, baking

amazingmumof6 Fri 08-Mar-13 23:26:28

nickelbabe if me thinking that it is obvious makes me a "privileged" person, then that is a very sad realization.....

maybe my education in communist Hungary was superior to the current British one/s available?

nickelbabe Sat 09-Mar-13 10:41:43

maybe it was.
Your point was that "the love of reading" is obvious.
My point was that no, it isn't to a lot of people.
hence the free books.

nailak Sat 09-Mar-13 15:09:48

Don't u get that love of reading is not just about books but the whole fantasy universe that books inspire, the way you identify with characters, and are inspired by characters and make games around books or imaginary scenarios or whatever, dressing up is part of that.

Kazooblue Sat 09-Mar-13 16:38:11

I think WBD is fab but the dressing up thing has turned into an excuse to do nothing else.It's a shame as so many kids need to be drawn into reading and makes many parents resentful which kind of clouds the message.Think the whole thing needs beefing up a bit as it's getting stale which is a shame as it much needed.

Do they send an ideas pack to schools?

Also think it would be good to enable kids to exchange the vouchers at school and bring in extra £s to buy others. Some parents won't take their dc into bookshops to spend them(the very kids who need this).We just bought ours and I ended up getting 5 as my 3 wanted them all,at £1 a book they're good value.Sadly I saw some vouchers on the pavement on the way home from school.sad

fuzzpig Sat 09-Mar-13 17:02:18

Oh that is sad kazoo - maybe they'd been dropped by accident? (Which would mean a sad child anyway)

What a waste I'd gladly have them

EllieorOllie Sat 09-Mar-13 17:07:03

I read the first half of this thread the other day when I was resentfully trawling for costume ideas and I haven't yet read the second the half BUT

This year was the first year I really GOT world book day. I have taught for 8 years now, mostly in very naice schools in very naice areas. I have dressed up, and seen the kids dress up, met the visiting author and manned the book fair. All jolly fun, if a bit of a hassle to organise. Book tokens were distributed, most got abandoned somewhere and that was the end of it. However, I am currently working in what is described in the local media as a 'troubled' school. Certainly there is a lot of deprivation and not much attainment. We had dress up day on Thursday, most children were in costume, lots of superheroes and princesses of course. At the end of the day we gave out the book tokens and I thought that, as usual, that would be the end of it. But yesterday, on the gate in the morning, a little girl bounded up to me with her new £1 book that her Mum had taken her to buy in town with the voucher that very afternoon. She asked if she could show it to the class. I agreed, but as I turned to collect the other children, Mum pulled me aside. She asked me if I could read the book to her DD because she herself couldn't read. In the end 5 children brought their new books in to show. We read them all. Lots more told me excitedly about their new book. 1 of the 5 said it was her first ever book.

Next year I shall probably grumble again when I get the wbd dressing up letter for my DD. But I know now what it is all about and I will remember what excitement it brought those kids, even having 1 book in their lives.

fuzzpig Sat 09-Mar-13 17:20:13

Oh Ellie I feel all sniffly now! That's what it's about, how lovely for them to have a book now smile

nickelbabe Sat 09-Mar-13 17:40:34

Ellie - how lovely smile grin

that's exactly what I mean grin

nickelbabe Sat 09-Mar-13 17:43:03

and it's exactly why I treat each child the same, whether they are using their token for a discount or just buying a £1 book - it might be one of those children like in your school, who have never owned a book of their own, and I treat them like they've bought the biggest most expensive book in the shop smile

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