“When you grow up and have children of your own, do please remember something important: A stodgy parent is not fun at all! What a child wants- and DESERVES- is a parent who is SPARKY!”-Roald Dahl
Why do I read? I read because thinking back to the days of being really young the days of pink and white bunnies decorating my walls, I’ll always remember my bed times. At a young age my bed times always consisted of a Roald Dahl story before bed, always. Before I could read myself, every night my Dad would take me to bed tuck me in and read a segment of a story to me. My favourite memory will always be reading The Twits, this continues to be such a vivid memory for me and a way to remember our relationship. Anyone who is an avid Roald Dahl fan will know exactly what story, page and illustration I am referring to. It is the story about The Twits trying to trap the birds to make a bird pie. My Dad’s marvellous sense of humour made him a very charismatic story-teller and I will never forget being in a fit of giggles when he read me the story.
“I have a passion for teaching kids to become readers, to become comfortable with a book, not daunted. Books shouldn’t be daunting, they should be funny, exciting and wonderful; and learning to be a reader gives a terrific advantage.” – Roald Dahl
Roald Dahl is famous for his fun and sometimes grotesque wordplay, scrappy yet wonderful illustrations by the wildly talented Quentin Blake and his ability to make a misfit child feel like they belong. Roald Dahl was born in 1916 in Wales, he spent the early part of his career serving in the British Air force. In 1940 he began writing and went on to become a bestselling author for adults and children. His dark humour writing style is sometimes very misunderstood. In many schools Roald Dahl books are actually banned. Apparently his story telling encourages children to behave badly and as some stories reference alcohol and drugs this lead to a ban being implemented.
From my experience, I believe it to be so important for parents to bond with their children through literature. My Roald Dahl bed times developed my learning and taught me how to read resulting in my Dad becoming the listener whilst I read the same stories back to him. My love of reading has grown with me and has fuelled an ambition to want to work in the writing industry. It’s fascinating how Roald Dahl today would have been 95 and still his stories and characters remain so relevant. This year has also celebrated the 50th Anniversary of James and the Giant Peach which was published in 1961, one of my all time favourites! If you haven’t read a Roald Dahl classic yet then maybe consider James and the Giant Peach. It’s about a young boy looking for acceptance away from his two revolting aunts and bidding farewell to a life of unhappiness by embarking on an adventure. The story is a wonderful tale about family and friendships – a perfect book to introduce you to Roald Dahl.