Maurice Gee's Under the Mountain.
The Wilberforces.... to be called a wilberforce was thenceforth an insult after the tv series.
My kids were lucky in having a river close by and a beach 15 minutes away - lots of hut-building, bridge-jumping, rope-swinging, mud-fighting fun! It was a rite of passage to conquer the bridge jump and the highest rope swing which, I can attest, was a blast.
Am I the only person here to have not loved Under the Mountain? (the book, that is; haven't seen the televersion).
I adore almost all Maurice Gee's fiction, but I just couldn't muster up the the requisite suspension of belief for Under the Mountain. It just got sillier and sillier.
For whimsical, philosophical children's literature (that can be read to them, then read by themselves) I can recommend Shel Silverstein (USA), especially The Giving Tree, The Missing Piece, The Missing Piece Meets the Big O, and Where the Sidewalk Ends (a collection of poems). My seven year old has had them for years and still loves them. She now reads the poetry to herself and it makes her laugh. He was another author who 'got' kids.
And then there's Shaun Tan (Australia) - a brilliant visual artist and storyteller - try The Arrival (a textless story of emigration; good for adults too), The Lost Thing (a boy who understands what others don't) and The Red Tree (a truly haunting comment on grief and despair turning into hope).
That's my two cents worth. Thanks, Jolisa, for a great post - I wish you did more (though this mother of two understands why not). They're always a highlight when they appear.
Hmm. Your teacher didn't teach you to use a couple of posts lying down on each side, and then a couple more on the other sides to hold it up (in a cross formation)?
For the setting phase, but not for the desperately important no moving at all while I shovel or everything will be ruined forever phase. You can't send 8-by-8s to do a woman's job...
(Who has the most overengineered raised bed in tha Ith? Us, that's who.)
A primary-school teacher treated us to Under the Mountain read out loud over a couple of weeks or so. The highlight was a reading on the summit of Rangitoto to coincide with a school trip. You could say it was a formative experience. Doubt I'd bother revisiting that territory, though.