Aquasprite Theme Demo

Arncliffe Public School: 1. Remember Way Way Back

Sunday, August 1, 2010 , Posted by Sandy Fussell at 10:33 PM

Hello everyone up at Arncliffe. It's 'up there' for me because I live on the South Coast. Today I have a memory challenge for you. Think back to when you were much younger. Think way, way back. To Kindergarten maybe. Can you remember the name of the first book you read, or if you are thinking even further back, a book someone read to you?

Whenever I visit a school I always take some books to 'show and tell' when I am talking about ideas and how a story begins. One of the books that goes everywhere with me is There's a Hippopotamus on my Roof Eating Cake. I take it because it's a great example of how a good story idea can last a long time - the story is over 25 years old. I also take it because it doesn't matter whether I am talking to Year 4 or Year 8 - everyone remembers this book! Do you remember it?

My earliest book memory is Goldilocks and the Three Bears. It had a very scary bear picture on the front. I was so terrified of it that in the end my mum hid it in the linen cupboard under all the sheets and pillow cases. But I was so scared I had to keep peeking to make sure it was still there. Of course that made me even more scared. These sorts of memories sneak into my writing. In Samurai Kids Fire Lizard, Mikko is afraid of heights but has to climb down a big cliff. He is not supposed to look down but he keeps sneaking a peek because he wants to check what he is afraid of is still there. Just like me and the Goldilocks book!

The other book I remember is Fox in Sox by Dr Seuss. I loved those silly rhymes when I was a preschooler and I still feel the same about them now. Especially the one about Tweetle Beetles. It's a great piece of tongue twisting writing: When tweetle beetles fight,it's called a tweetle beetle battle.
And when they battle in a puddle,it's a tweetlebeetle puddle battle.


Some books you grow too old for and others are still fun no matter how much older you get. Now I think the Goldilocks book is a bit boring and the picture isn't scary at all. But I still think Fox in Sox is wonderful fun and I still love to read it aloud and get my tongue all tangled. If like me you think you are never too old for some Dr Seuss silliness, click here to visit the Dr Suess Story Maker and make a silly story of your own.

Fox in Sox is such fun two friends even created a rap from the book.


What is the first book you can remember being read to you? Maybe it was your mum or dad, or grandparent or class teacher? What was the first book you read yourself? What do you think about these books now?

Currently have 68 comments:

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussell,
    my name is Christopher from Arncliffe Public School.
    Your question to Arncliffe Public School was what was our first book we've ever read. Well my first book that i've ever read was "Green Eggs And Ham" written by Dr Suess.
    I love his books!
    Plus i'm in Literacy Group 2 the second highest group in our school!
    And the book we are reading is called "Indian In The Cupboard" written by Lynne Reid Banks.
    Now i'm in Year 5 and i love Percy Jackson books and Deltora Quest books!
    Anyway good luck with your new books!

    From Christopher

    P.s: Can You say hello to us in your next blog!

    BYE!

  1. hassanin says:

    Hey my name is mohamed from Arncliffe Puplic School i can't remember what my first book was but i do remember 1 of my best books it was "Tuck Everlasting" by Natalie Babbitt.It was a book about a family who drank some water from under a tree and then they were imortal.
    Also I am in Literacy group 2. We have the best teacher MR Khamis who is a really good reader.We are reading a the book "The Indian In The Cupboard" by Lynne Reid Banks. Im in year 6 and love books like "Robinson Crusoe" Daniel Defoe which we read last term.

    From Mohamed
    BYE

  1. CHRISTOPHER, I love Green Eggs and Ham! Dr Seuss really knew how to rhyme. I also like ONE FISH, TWO FISH. Pretty cool drawings too. I haven't read any Percy Jackson books but I intend to. But first I am going to read THE RED PYRAMID by Rick Riordan who wrote Percy Jackson - I read a review and it soudned excellent. Plus I like stories about Egypt. I went there once. I also like Deltora Quest. I was lucky enough to be at a schools festival in QLD with Mark McBride who illustrates the Deltora books and he swapped me a painting from Shifting Sands for the first four books in my Samurai Kids series! I was sooo lucky! Have you seen the Deltora Quest cartoon?

  1. MOHAMED, it sounds like you like to read adventure stories. Do you like the Percy Jackson series like Christopher does? I haven't read THE INDIAN IN THE CUPBOARD although I have heard a lot about it. Would you recommend I read it? What is it about? I like historical adventure, myths and legends, and fantasy. But if it's a good story, I'll always give it a try. I like the sound of immortal water - I can think of lots of good story ideas based on that.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Sandy Fussell
    This is Christopher again.
    Yes i've seen a few episodes of the cartoon series Deltora Quest and they are not bad just poor quality.
    I remember when I was little I also loved your book about the "Hippopotamus Eating Cake On The Roof". It was entertaining!
    Now i can't remember where my copy of that book was. Anyway you're a fantastic childrens author.

    From Christopher.

    BYE!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Sandy my name is Owen. When I was a kid my favourite book was called Owen Stanley. Every night I always read it. Now my favourite book is Deltora Quest. I am 12 years old and I am going to read your books soon . My class book is Blueback. My friend Chris said he was talking to you. Please reply back next time BYE.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy
    My name is Hassan I’m from Arncliffe public. My favourite book is Just Macbeth I love the story because it’s so funny im trying to borrow one of your books but they’re always borrowed. Good luck with your new books.

    P.s. Can you say hello to all my friends that comment.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy,

    Hi my name is Annisa, I’m from Arncliffe P.S. Your question was what is the first book we remember as a child, well I don’t remember what my first book. But I think it’s Pooh Bear. My mum read it to me every night and I fell right asleep.

    From Annisa

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy

    Hi my name is Tamara, I am from Arncliffe Public School.
    Your question was what were our first books that mum or dad read to us. Well my first book was Pooh Bear but it was the Brazilian version because I come from Brazil so that was the first book that got read to me and it so funny I really enjoyed it. I still have it at home it came with another 4 books that I really enjoy as well.


    Thanks bye xoxox

    From Tamara.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy,

    My name is Lauren from Arncliffe Public School.
    The question you want us to answer was what was your first book ever read to you. Mine was Goldilocks And The Three Bears. I used to laugh when Goldilocks broke the chair. My second was The Cat In The Hat by Dr Seuss. He is so funny my parents and my brother thinks it's funny too. I told them that everyone loves Dr Seuss around the world in different versions. What is the first book ever read to you? and your second? Now what is your favorite?


    From Lauren.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy
    I am Abrar from Arncliffe Public School. I don’t remember the first book that I read. But now I love Roald Dahl books they are so funny and I have read Charile and The Chocolate Factory and now I am reading Danny the Champion of the world. Do you like Roald Dahl books?

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel

    Hi my name is Mohammed and I am a student from Arncliffe Public School.
    The first book I read was The Cat In the Hat by Dr. Seuss. I really liked it because it rhymed and it was funny. I used to read it 10 times a day because I really liked it.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel

    Hey, I’m Abbas Kassira from Arncliffe Public School and I’m here to tell you about the first book I read. The first book I read was Goldilocks and the Three bears. My mum used to read it to me when I was young.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy

    My first book was the Cat in the Hat by Roald Dahl.

    Dominic

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel

    I had a book that I liked to read called Silly Billy.

    This book was about a family of goblins.

    There was a boy named Billy who was very silly.

    From Ali

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel

    My name is Parker and my favourite book from my childhood is How to care for your Budgie. One more thing, if I write a paragraph from the book that I’m writing could you tell me what you think?

    Your friend Parker from Arncliffe Public School.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy


    My first book and favourite book was Socks in Box because it is a funny rhyming book. Also my second favourite book is the Samurai Kids series and my third favourite book is the Deltora Quest series. My literacy group is reading Blueback by Tim Winton.


    From Thomas

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel

    I am Mariam from Arncliffe Public School. I don’t remember the first book that I read but now I love Little Red Riding Hood which is a book that is scary. The second book I read is the Three Little Pigs. Now that I am older I love all the book Roald Dahl books. They are so funny.

    Thank you for reading my blog.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel

    Hi my name is Amani. The first book I read was The Enormous Crocodile by Roald Dahl. I loved it because it was funny. Now I am in year 6 and I read more Roald Dahl books, like the Fantastic Mr Fox, The Twits and Eseotrot.

    Thanks for reading my comment.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Dear Sandy Fussel,

    My name is Diana from Arncliffe Public School. When I was young my mum used to read me Benny Butterfly. I have read some of your books and they’re amazing. I enjoy reading Dr.Suese it is really funny my favourite is Fox in Sox.
    Diana

    BYE!!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Sandy this is Renee from Arncliffe.P.S you asked to remember either the first book we read or a book that you loved and had someone read to you alot well i couldn't remember so asked my mum. She said that there were two books one was "Goldilocks And The Three Little Bears" which i'm sure alot of people read. The other was "Possum Magic" which is the one i most loved and carried everywhere. I also got alot of people to read it to me.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Sandy
    My name is Justin and Iam in Litracy group 2.My favourite childhood story is The 10 Best Things About My Dad which is by Christine Loonis. My favourite series now is Rowan Of Rin.
    You are a fantastic author and good luck with all your future books.

  1. CHRISTOPHER, Your comment reminded me why I wasn't so keen on the Deltora cartoon. Normally I like anime style cartoons - The Last Airbender is one of my favourites. The probelm I had with the Deltora cartoon was I wanted to see pictures like the ones Marc McBride drew in the books. Anything else just didn't work for me.

  1. OWEN, How cool to be read a book with your name in it! I love DELTORA QUEST books and have read them all. I even have the HOW TO DRAW MONSTERS books. I am not a very good artist but I like to try. Do you like drawing? If you do read one of my SAMURAI KIDS books you will see they are illustrated. But not by me, I can't even draw a stick figure samurai! BTW BLUEBACK is an excellent book. Hope you enjoy it.

  1. HASSAN, I have just finished reading JUST MACBETH!!!! I enjoyed it a lot but it's not my favourite Andy Griffiths book. I think I like THE PENCIL OF DOOM best. Which is your favourite of his books?

  1. ANNISA, I'll tell you a secret. I still read Pooh bear books. I think they are very quirky and I like Pooh's attitude to life. He is just happy to be who he is and I think that's great. My sister loves Pooh bear even more than I do and today I bought her a birthday card that says 'Mmm honey.' PS I hope she doesn't read this!!!!

  1. TAMARA, Does that mean you can read in two languages? I wish I could. I have lots of Pooh bear books and even some books about Pooh bear books! My favourite character is Eeyore. He is such a sad sack I just want to hug him and cheer him up. Plus he is purple and that's my favourite colour.

  1. TAMARA, Does that mean you can read in two languages? I wish I could. I have lots of Pooh bear books and even some books about Pooh bear books! My favourite character is Eeyore. He is such a sad sack I just want to hug him and cheer him up. Plus he is purple and that's my favourite colour.

  1. LAUREN, We both have Goldilocks early book memories. I don'ever remember having a book read to me at home. But I do remember being given a book in Year 1. It was a book about Betty and Jim. Full of easy sentences like See Betty run. But I was so excited. I read it straight away instead of listening to the teacher and then when I had finished I started listening and she said we were going to read it for the next month. I had already finished! I think I have always loved reading. My mum says I taught myself to read before I went to school. I don't know how I could have done that but she insists she didn't teach me.

  1. ABRAR, I think Roald Dahl is a genius writer! I can't pick a favourite - maybe the BFG. I also love his poetry. He wrote some really funny, crazy poems. Have a look in the library and see if you can find any of his poetry and let me know what you think. From memory, most of the poems are short (and silly).

  1. MOHAMED, Dr Seuss is one of my all time favourites. And you know what - you never grow too old for Dr Seuss. His books are the best fun when read aloud - those crazy rhymes have a great rythm. There's some funny drawings in his books too. Do you like drawing?

  1. ABBA, That's three of us that remember Goldilocks. Were you scared of it like I was? I think I might have been scared not because of the story but there was a very, very mean looking black bear on the front cover of my book. Pictures can be very powerful. Especially those on the front cover.

  1. DOMINIC, Did you see the CAT IN THE HAT movie? I didn't. I couldn't imagine it as a movie. I like the pictures in the book too much to imagine the cat being any different so I didn't go.

  1. ALI, That sounds like a great book. Silly Billy is such a good title. I often read a book because I like the name of the title and I would definitely give that one a try

  1. PARKER, You are the only person to mention a non-fiction title! I am guessing you had a pet budgie? Or maybe wished you did? I had a pet budgie when I was in Year 5. It was green and yellow and I called it Paddy. I would love to read your paragraph. I'm very excited to hear you are writing a book. Just post your paragraph in a comment or if it is too long you can email it to me

  1. THOMAS, I am thrilled to hear you like my SAMURAI KIDS books. If you read more than the first book, let me know whch one you like best and I'll see if it is the same one as me. I am a big Deltora fan and I have all the books. In the beginning they belonged to my son but when he got older he gave them to me and I will never be too old to enjoy them!

  1. MARIAM, That's a good point you made. Lots of fairy tales for young kids are really quite scary. I was scared of Goldilocks and the Three Bears AND Red Riding Hood. I am still a scaredy cat when it comes to horror stories. But I love funny books like Roald Dahl.

  1. AMANI, Did you see the Fantastic Mr Fox movie? I haven't but I am defintely going to watch it. My friends said it was excellent and I loved the book, so I am hoping I will love the movie too.

  1. DIANA, I am always thrilled to hear when someone says they enjoyed one of my books. Thank you. And we have the same favourite Dr Seuss books! Maybe you will be a writer one day too. Do you like to write? Or draw?

  1. RENEE, POSSUM MAGIC is a wonderful book.I really like the illustrations and recently I went to listen to Julie Vivas, who did the artwork, give a talk about how she comes up with the picture ideas. I wish I could draw but I am hopeless.

  1. JUSTIN, I like ROWAN of RIN too. Although my favourite Emily Rodda books are still DELTORA QUEST. You might also like THE DRAGONKEEPER trilogy. It's by an Australian author too, Carole Wilkinson and it was Book of the Year in 2004 so is probably in the library.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi, i'm Remy and my first book that I read was Alice In Wounderland I loved that book and I still do!!

    anyway, BYE!!

  1. REMY You have reminded me that I was scared of ALICE IN WONDERLAND when I was in preschool. The book I saw had the scariest Queen of Hearts picture ever. I heard the movie was really good but I haven't seen it. Have you? I think the Cheshire Cat is my favourite character.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi its me again...REMY,

    I have seen the movie in 3d by TIM BURTON and I thought it was great!!
    I recomend you to watch it especially in 3D because it was amazing. I also love Cheshire cat because he is very intresting.
    anyway,BYE

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi!My name's Sherry and I'm from APS. The first book I read was "The Mouse And The Squirrel" By Enid Blyton. It is such a cute story with a little mouse and a squirrel!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi! This is Sherry again. I just remembered that another one of my favourite books was "Possum Magic" By Mem Fox

  1. REMY, I think I have missed out on the 3D because it is no longer on at the movies? I like cats - I have two Burmese cats. A really good series about cats - if you like fantasy and animal stories - is Warriors. Have you heard of it?

  1. SHERRY, One of my all time favourite books is called THE TALE OF DESPEREAUX and it's about a mouse. Once I rescued a baby possum - and we called it Mouse (it looked like it could have curled up on a page of POSSUM MAGIC). Mouse the Possum used to live in an old tree stump on my front verandah - and as he grew better he would wander further and further - and sometimes not come home. Until eventually he returned to his life in the bush.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey Sandy Fussell,
    It's Claire from Arncliffe Public School and the first book I ever read was 'Clifford The Big Red Dog'and 'Possum Magic' as Sherry said was one of my favourites too. Even though I didn't really understand what my mum was saying when she read about Clifford I really liked the pictures and Clifford was a very funny puppy that used to make me laugh when my mum read it to me. Even now I still enjoy curling up and reading the adventures of Emily (his owner)and Clifford The Big Red Dog!

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Sandy Fussell,

    My name's Haru from Arncliffe Public School and my first ever book was "Over The Moon Bear" by Jasmine Brook and Anthony Lewis

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey Sandy
    I remember when I was a kid that I used to love it when my mum was teaching me how to read so then she read me an alphabet book.

    P.S I guess that is why I'm in the top literacy group.

    Rachel A.P.S

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey Sandy,

    The Book I remember reading when I was younger was "The Three Little Pigs." But Im not to sure of the authors name. It was one of my Favourites.

    Cassie A.P.S :)

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey Sandy,

    This is Rhian from Arncliffe Public School and the first book that I can remember getting read to was Dr Seuss Sleep Book. I actually thought that this book was magical because when my father read it to me after reading ONE page I had already fallen asleep. My favourite line from that book is " A yawn is quite catching you see like a cough, it just takes one yawn to start other yawns off."
    Now I love mystery books and my favourite detective is Nancy Drew.

    Yours truly, Rhian

  1. CLAIRE, I think you just made an important point. Sometimes we don't have to understand everything about a story to enjoy it - and sometimes it encourages us to go and find out new things. I often discover a word that I don't know what it means - so I will get out the dictionary - or Google it if my laptop is on. I remember Clifford too from when my children were young. We used to read it and watch it on television.

  1. HARU, I hadn't heard of that one so I googled it and found a picture of the cover - with a bear in a hot air balloon basket flying high. I can imagine a great story there - for young kids and much older ones! Imagine if it was a boy in the balloon basket instead of a bear!

  1. RACHEL, Alphabet books are some of the best picture books. I also like counting books. If I was an illustrator - and I can't draw even stick figures so not much hope of that- but if I was, I would like to illustrate a Dr Seuss alphabet book.

  1. CASSIE, Your comment made me think - who did write the Three Little Pigs - was it a traditional fairy tale or is the author known? So I did a little internet research and found it was a guy called Orchard Halliwell-Phillipps, and the story was first published around 1843! Of course there have also been lots of variations since then so you might have read one of those. I remember a rhyming version.

  1. RHIAN, You have the same name as the illustrator of my Samurai Kids books! Are you interested in drawing? I loved that line you quoted from the DR SEUSS SLEEP BOOK. I thought the words sounded magical. I love Dr Seuss but don't have that one in my bookshelves. I'm going to see if I can find it at the library.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hello, my name is Bence. I can't remember the first book I read but the first book that was ever read to me was a pop-up book with Hungarian nursery rhymes in it.

  1. BENCE, I still love pop up books. My son has an excellent Star Wars one and on one page there is a pop up battle between Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader and the light sabers glow!

    The book is by Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart. They are paper artists. My favourite is MEGABEASTS, about prehistoric animals and you can see it here http://www.dinosaurstore.com/Books.html

  1. Geneviev says:

    Hi Sandy Fussell,

    My name is Geneviev and I go to Arncliffe Public School. My favourite book when I was a child was "The Tale of Peter Rabbit". I used to beg my parents to read it to me every night and when ever I heard about the part when Mr McGregor in the past had made Peter's father into a pie, I would hide under my bed sheets and shiver. In fact sometimes I would get nightmares.

  1. Dear Sandy,
    I can't remember the first book i read when i was small but i can remember my best one. It was "Fox In Sock" by Dr Seuss and I loved it because it was funny and fun to read but at first I didn't know how to read English so I only looked at the pictures. Know I love all kinds of books and Authors. BY ISRAA.A

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi, Sandy Fussell
    My name is Cameron and i go to Arncliffe Public School.
    The first book i ever read was 'Flat Stanley' and it was by Jeff Brown.

  1. GENEVIEV, I was often scared by books too - even though now I wonder why - most of it wasn't very scary. Recently my sister said to me - "when are you going to write a book about lava?" And I said "what?" She said: "When you were a kid you were afraid of samurai swords, polar bears and lava flows. You've written a story about the first two. One to go!"

  1. ISRAA, You are so right. Picture books are an excellent way to learn to read English. Fox in Sox is my favourite Dr Seuss book. My second favourite is ONE FISH TWO FISH RED FISH BLUE FISH. I reckon you never get to old for book like those.

  1. CAMERON, I love Flat Stanley. A teacher friend in Canada was doing Flat Stanley as the class book and the class sent their cardboard Stanley to me in Australia for a holiday. I took a picture of him with a koala, at the beach and on the Harbour Bridge. Then Stanley and I sent lots of postcards and eventually I packaged him up and he went home with all his 'holiday' photos. It's a fun book.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Sandy Fussell.Sorry i am a bit late but my name is Niamh Mc Menamin from Arncliffe Public School.I remember my first I ever read and it was Beauty and the Beast. i don't know who it is by because i was so little but i love the way that Beauty was so pretty but very sad. i learned a lesson that even when you have so many things in the world you can never be really happy with some to love

  1. NIAMH - Wow!!! That is a comment certainly worth waiting for. I can see you are the sort of reader who thinks a lot about the story. Me too! I like how it was sad but also had a happy ending.