Animals have these advantages over man: they never hear the clock strike, they die without any idea of death, they have no theologians to instruct them, their last moments are not disturbed by unwelcome and unpleasant ceremonies, their funerals cost them nothing, and no one starts lawsuits over their wills.

Voltaire (1694-1778)

Upside Down!

When reading a book to children turn the book upside down before turning the page. You can end back on the same page again and again and again...


Reading a story works on many levels beyond the story itself. It can also be a very good chance to interact with children and build rapport. Young children, especially, can enjoy the same story over and over again. But this can involve more than just the meaning of the story itself.

Turning a book upside down can be used both with a well worn story and to focus on a particular page. I've found that by gripping a book at the bottom of the spine it is the work of a moment to rotate my wrist and turn the book upside down. I then turn the page with my other hand. Because the book is upside down I'm actually going backwards. When the children complain that the book is upside-down I apologise and turn it the right way up. Turning the page again brings me back to where I started from. This can be kept going for as long as desired.

In addition to apologising it is also possible to introduce the expression "Right way up!". It's best to make sure the book is the right way up before saying right way up, otherwise it can get confusing!