One of the lines I really loved from Roald Dahl’s Matilda movie was
“So Matilda’s strong young mind continued to grow, nurtured by the voices of all those authors who had sent their books out into the world like ships on the sea. These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.“
I didn’t realise this at first, but that’s not actually in the book. The book actually says,
“The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives. She went on olden-day sailing ships with Joseph Conrad. She went to Africa with Ernest Hemingway and to India with Rudyard Kipling. She travelled all over the world while sitting in her little room in an English village.
The very soul of me relates to this quote. I may not have read Ernest Hemingway and Rudyard Kipling as a 3 year old, but in junior school I read Famous Five, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, Secret Seven, and a bunch of others you would only know if you were Afrikaans, like Trompie en die Boksom Bende. At one stage I was reading them at a rate of a book a day, in school time. Really, I thought school just got in the way of my reading time!
Well I am on the way to instilling the same love of reading in my girls. Their dad has a big part to play in that – he has read to Ameli almost every night he’s spent with her. On her sixth birthday, they finished reading the entire Chronicles of Narnia.
Anyway, while preparing our current Matilda theme, I couldn’t get “ like ships on the sea” out of my head.
Matilda is also full of metaphors, it’s a fabulous book for introducing the concept too, with metaphors like:
Even when their own child is the most disgusting little blister you could ever imagine, they still think that he or she is wonderful
Is the child actually a disgusting little blister? No. But what does it tell you about the appearance of the child?
It’s quite fun actually, talking through some of the metaphors in Matilda.
But, the one we were focused on today was that of ships on the sea.
For this craft you’ll need:
- shells, driftwood or other flat objects, cleaned so that the glue will stick
- a glue gun
- a toothpick, skewer or lollipop stick
- printouts of your favourite book covers, or you can use ours. We have Matilda Ships Triangles, Matilda Ships Square Sails and Matilda Ships Sailboat Sails.
This craft couldn’t really be simpler. We printed some of our favourite book covers – Roald Dahl, Dr Seuss and so on – and cut them into squares or sail-shape (if you know the word for that, let me know!)
For the square – pirate – sails (clearly not a sailor, am I!) thread the large, then small sails through the toothpick. For the others, glue the sail to the skewer.
Apply a healthy helping of glue to the shell or driftwood, and place the skewer, holding it for a few seconds so that it can dry in place.
It’s quite a quick craft, in the end, and before you know it you’ll have a literary armada.