Valentine’s Guest House
With its first rate service, Valentine’s guest house is a popular place to stay. When the owner’s daughter opens a storeroom and discovers a large tiger with a big smile inside asking for accommodation she is astonished. However despite her mum Valentine saying they don’t have a spare room, Elsie is determined to help. She offers to share her room with Emmet and she and her mum rearrange things in preparation for the new guest.
Sadly however, the other guests are far less accommodating and leave as fast as they can.
As his hosts put up a ‘Vacancies’ sign, a grateful Emmet gets busy messaging all his friends and acquaintances about Valentine’s
and after a long wait, the guest house is once again thriving, albeit with a different clientele. Then follow some imaginative modifications to the building: a lift is installed, the door is enlarged when a huge guest arrives, a rooftop hole provides a room with a wonderful view, there’s a cool spot for a pair that like to chill and underground spaces are created for those accustomed to a subterranean lifestyle.
Harmonious living is the way to go as is shown in Sam Sharland’s gently humorous scenes of the guests’ comings and goings and further comings; but there’s one guest who isn’t going anywhere: you can guess which one that is.
A delightful picture book debut with vital messages about acceptance, inclusivity and empowerment.
We Are the Shapes
There are the squares – honest, supportive even, and reliable, dislikers of difference; there are also the triangles – creative, edgy, odd and happy to be different. Triangles consider squares boring.
These two groups do not get on at all, in fact they have diametrically opposing views on everything and are positively hostile towards one another.
Then there are circles: they know the issues existing between squares and triangles but believe that if they were prepared to ‘roll with their differences’, the two parties could get along.
Can they rectify things between these opposing factions? It’s worth a try: consider this equation – triangles + squares = rocket to the moon. So maybe … but then just when things seemed to be going well, a row breaks out.
Is circle able to turn this situation around? Perhaps with a bit of creative thinking and a new and tasty notion.
How much better it is to accept and celebrate difference. Learning to get along with those who seem – superficially at least – to be different from ourselves is an important life lesson all young children need to learn, (though perhaps it’s their parents for whom difference is an issue not the youngsters themselves). So it’s appropriate to share this easy to relate to book with its satisfying solution at home as well as in the classroom. With its easy-to-read text, it’s also a book that KS1 readers might well be able to enjoy reading for themselves.