Duck Dives Down Deep

Grandmothers are allowed to have pride at the achievements of their grandchildren and to tell the world about them. This is my boast about a book that my 5-year old grandson, Oli, wrote with me.

107 Cover 1

It began with some painting some months ago, which turned into a story (see below) and which has now developed into a series. Here are the first pages drying on the light fitting in my kitchen.

107 duck drying 2

I wrote the text to Oli’s dictation, he added the page numbers.

107 page numbers 4

Just as I thought we were done he said ‘the blurb!’ More dictation.

107 blurb 5

And here, in the style of Bob Dylan, is Oli’s book.

107 Reading 6

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107 Reading 9

107 Reading 10

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107 Reading 13

107 Reading tog 14Later he read his book to his mother. Later still he wrote Duck Dives Down even Deeper. And since then there have been two more in the series.

Where will it end?


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Filed under Books, Writing

8 Responses to Duck Dives Down Deep

  1. Lovely, Caroline, I wonder which of you had the most fun producing this book?

  2. From one proud grandparent to another, I want to say a big heartfelt ahhhh. His book shows great promise: alliteration, action and a satisfying conclusion and he’s not yet six! Perhaps the most impressive element of all – and the one that he is most likely to take into adult life – is his tenacity. He sees a job through, doesn’t he? And think of all the wonderful things he has gained from his very first series of books, time spent with someone important to him, and the confidence-building knowledge that his ideas are valid and can be brought to life. well done both of you

  3. cinda-cite

    please tell Oli it’s wonderful! and “thank you” for making and sharing with his friends. i was happy to know what it was like for a deep diving duck.

    i love stories children write — for their engagement with the natural world and lack of sensationalism. they write of adventures without villains and evil. their stories don’t have the tension youths and adults crave. their stories are not craven 🙂 i know that’s not the right meaning of craven. but i like it.

  4. Caroline

    Thank you for your positive respones to my grandparental indulgence. Except – it is of course important to build a love of books and confidence in reading and writing with children. And thank you for picking up different things – his tenacity, and our different but entirely mutual enjoyments.
    I showed him the blogpost yesterday. He was pleased but I think more proud of his sticker proclaiming he was 4th in the school sportsday class boys’ race! Well it had just happened.

  5. Eileen

    Delightful – wonderful pictures. I like the smile on his face on the down and down page.
    Anna looks so proud and delighted too.

  6. Marianne Coleman

    That’s lovely Caroline. I like your Bob Dylan style presentation too.

    I agree about his tenacity and it is lovely to see him so engaged in reading, writing and painting.

    I think I will try and inspire a grandson or two to do something similar. We have quite a lot of time in the summer holidays!


  7. Anne

    He showed me his book so proudly and so seriously. I thought the artwork was impressive too- the page where Duck comes up from the abyss and the water becomes lighter and lighter in shade. I must admit I thought the use of the word “abyss” was your input Caro but he soon put me right on that! What a wonderful lesson he has learnt – that it is possible to make, write and illustrate a book!

    • Caroline

      I learned ‘abyss’ from him. And so much else.
      One thing I didn’t highlight in the post, but you can just about see it is that the duck actually moves up the page as he swims to the surface, on a kind of concertina strip. The subsequent books in the Duck Diving series has had to include this feature as well.

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