Friday News
Old News
Staff use
     & Dates

Policy Docs
     & Pods




email an author - Michael Cox

Our Year 5 and 6 children will be attending Michael's talk about writing books for children during Brighton Festival, and then having lunch with him.
We are emailing to and fro in the weeks before the talk, and will put the text of the emails onto this page, so that children in other years can see what's happening.
Michael's web-site is here

Michael with some of his books


Hi Dave Dyer and class

Waif-like Michael Cox offering himself up for adoption here

Best wishes

Exclaim Och < easy anagram


Hi Michael,

sorry to be so slow replying to your email (Easter holidays). Some of the children worked out that 'Exclaim Och' was an anagram of your name!

We've booked tickets for two classes (about 65 children) to come and see you at Brighton Festival, and we've also let all the Year 6 children look at your web-site and choose a book each (which are now at last on their way from Amazon).

Here are a couple of messages from children -

Dear Mr Cox

I have read your book about the Internet and I found it very interesting I have learnt a lot about it and I look forward to reading more of your books.

Miles Year 6

Dear Mr Cox
my name is Jasmine I am writing to ask if you are writing any books at the moment. Do you work on more then one book at a time? And how many more books are you thinking about writing? Are you thinking about being an author all your life?

Jasmine Walker 11 Middle Street school

In the next few days, I'll put a page up on our school web-site ( with the texts of our emails so that children can keep track without having to use email all the time.

Best wishes

Dave Dyer


Subject: Dear hornswoggling and larrybumptious snollygosters

Dear Class Year  6 of Middle Street Primary School and Mr Dyer (aka Dave / Sir  )
Thank you for your email and your questions and thank you for unravelling that wakdraw ranamag for me.
I have looked at your school web site and the map of your location. You are near that big, blue, wet thingy, aren't you?  How many metres above sea level are you? And does it ever come in your classroom when the tide is particularly high or on really windy days? And do you all rush off for quick paddles at playtimes?
Answers to Jasmine’s questions - as follows:
1) Q : Are you writing any books at the moment.
A: No, I'm writing this email to you ... ha ha. But seriously, yes, I am.  I’m doing some fiction at the moment, which I have been desperate to do for yonks but have been to busy writing non-fiction,visiting schools and combing my hair (it’s a sad little thing but it does like to be combed ). The fiction I am writing has got yaks, kittens and pirates in it. So there!
2) Q: Do you work on more then one book at a time?
A: Yes, and since I had my extra arms attached, this has become loads easier.
3) Q: And how many more books are you thinking about writing?
A: About ten fowzand (as they say round my way).
4) Q: Are you thinking about being a author all your life?
A: Yes, ever since I was a puppy.

Today’s riddle: What starts with "e" ends with "e" and contains only one letter?
Answers on fifty pound notes please.

And today’s amazing true news story
An eight-year-old boy has walked to school in the middle of the night in Aachen in Germany. He was found at 3 o’clock in the morning and picked up by the police as he walked home, carrying his school bag. He told them that he’d been to school but discovered it was closed, so he’d decided to go home again. His mum and dad were still fast asleep when the police got him back and they didn’t even know he’d left the house. The boy said he’d woken up, mis-read the time on his alarm clock, thought he was late for school and gone rushing off to lessons.

And almost finally ... Miles of Yr 6: I'm pleased that you learned something from reading ‘The Incredible Internet’ (wot one rote). Did the gorilla story make you cry? By the way, shouldn't you now be ‘Kilometres’ of Yr 6, what with us going metric and whatnot?
Best wishes
PS Can I send copies of my emails to you to Sarah who is  organising us?

Subject :  flabber-smacked and gob-ghasted

A swift email to say ....
I am dead chuffed that you are all coming to see me at the Feastival
BTW: If any of you fancy walking around Brighton wearing a COME AND SEE MICHAEL COX AT THE FESTIVAL sandwich board and shouting out nice things about me through a megaphone I reckon it’s definitely worth a few free signed books - only joking (or am I?).
I have only been to Brighton about four or seven times before - the first was when I was about 14 or 15  when I hitch-hiked there from my home in Nothinghamshire in about 1964 to see the Mods and Rockers pulling faces at each other and dissing each others’ hair-dos and whatnot  on the beaches - but I told my Mum I was staying at my pal’s house down the road - yes, naughty I know, but I did fess up and apologise to her a bit later on (when I was 43). Anyway, after all sorts of really scary adventures on the road, involving riding on the backs of lorries full of sand in pouring rain, getting stuffed into  a pop group’s van with all their instruments, sleeping in fields full of donkeys and getting lifts from maniacs in Aston Martins, I ended up in a shelter on the sea front at Brighton, freezing cold at four o’clock in the morning, all on my ownliness and wishing I was at home in bed with my pet hamster Frederick (Frederick didn’t actually sleep in my bed  - his little hamster-starter-hut was in my bedroom). Luckily for me, a really friendly policeman found me and gave me two shillings to go and buy a cup of tea and a giant sandwich at an all- night cafe. So, thank you kind policeman - you saved my bacon (buttie).
NB CLASS 6 - whatever you do, DON’T do the hitch-hiking thing yourselves! It was really dangerous back then and I had some near escapes getting lifts with fruit and nut cases and having people trying to bundle me in sacks and run off with me and even worse! - but now it’s about 5000 times more  dangerous so ....  DON’T EVER DO IT!
I’m away all this week on a top secret author research trip  to a place called Foreign but the minute  I return to Englandland I’ll bung you another email.
Toodle pip and all the best


Hi Michael,

We've finally received our delivery from Amazon, and every child is fully equipped with at least one of your books. Here is an email-sackful of questions and comments from a variety of inquisitive children-

Gabriella asks -     

When did you start becoming a writer what inspired you to start writing?
Have you written any grown-up books?
Do you have any children?

Kizzy enquires -

What do you think is your best book ?
Do you think you have written your best book yet ?
Do you have any pets?  I have a dog called Mojo.
p.s. I'm reading Elvis  and his Pelvis.

Laura questions-

How old are you ?     
How many books have you written so far this year ?                                     
What's your favourite colour ?

Molly asks (in a way that implies that you can't trust story-tellers to tell the truth) -

Did you really hitch-hike to Brighton?


When you wrote 'Dead Famous Elvis and his Pelvis' how did you find out all
the little details, like his girl friends names, his weight before and after. Oh, and
that he flew halfway across America for 22 giant hamburgers? I wondered this
as I read your book for the 3rd time. And how did you come up with all those
jokes? Maybe you should quit writing and be a full time comedian! Can't wait
to hear from you.

Rosa queries -

What is your favourite book that you've written?
How long did it take you to write Elvis and his Pelvis?
Do you like chocolate?
P.S. I'm reading 'Elvis and his Pelvis'

 Heloise and Jonathan collaboratively enquire –

We were  inspired by the introduction of Top 10 Ghost Stories - what made you think of writing about ghosts?   

Olivia interrogates -

Just to ask, does your brain hurt a lot ? because your head’s full of great
ideas for your amazing books.
When did you realise you wanted to be a writer? and how old were you?
Could you give me some tips on how to be a good author? because when I'm older i want to travel and write books.
P.S Could you tell Chris Smedley his illustraitions  are amazing!

Sienna appreciates -

I'm writing to tell you how good Ghost Stories is and ask you a few questions about you and  your books.
How many books have you written?
And do you have any sisters or brothers?
I've got two sisters unfortunately, I wish I didn't.
I am reading Ghost Stories now. 


You’ll probably be grateful that most of the boys in Year 6 are very slow typists and haven’t finished their questions yet!


Dear Class Six and Mr Dyer

Thank you for your e-mail. This is not an email - I have also sent it as a letter which is what they used to send in the old days when children were kept in shoe boxes and proper gentlemen wore their ties and underpants to take their monthly baths ... and more importantly, before MAD BOFFINS INC got round to inventing the World Wide Interweb. It (the letter) will probably be delivered to your school by a multi-faceted, intergalactic, virtual superbeing (i.e. the postman). The reason for this is that my web brutes  forbade me from sending emails unless I authenticated my SMTP (or Hessian Teepee?) ... which  I have now done
Now, here are the answers to your probing questions and merciless interrogation (please stop shining that light in my eyes, give me drink of water ... and allow me one phone call to my lawyer).

When did you start becoming a writer what inspired you to start writing?
I started writing at around the time I learned to write but completely forgot to write down when this was but I know my Mum taught me to read before I started school so it was probably about then (or possibly last Tuesday?).
Have you written any grown-up books?
No, but I am planning on doing a funny one one day. However, I have done groan-up writing for a web site on the Internet called where I write about famous artists and whatnot but in a funny way.
Do you have any children?
Yes I’ve got 18 of the little scamps - cor ... they don’t half eat a lot. Not really - just one  called Tom who is almost 30 years old and is also an author and a journalist who writes for newspapers like the Times and Observer - but cor, he don’t half eat a lot.

What do you think is your best book ?
Hard to say. Also,  if I mention a particular one, all the others get really jealous. So I better keep quiet.
Do you think you have written your best book yet ?
Definitely not. Oh no ... that’s done it! They’re all hissing and sucking their teeth at me now!
Do you have any pets?
Yes, a yak called Sadie and an ant called Sting.Not really - just a load of fish and a cat who won’t stop miaowing (the cat, not the fish). We used to have a herd of chickens too including a massive cockerel called Eggbert who used to peck my legs when I fed them (the chickens, not my legs) but most of them eventually donated themselves to Foxfam. We also have three ducks, two pheasants, a woodpecker and a load of robins and blue-twits and stuff but we share them with our next door neighbour, Old Mother Nature.
p.s. I'm reading Elvis  and his Pelvis.
Yes, I’ve read that too

How old are you ?
Mind your own business! Polite children don’t ask 55-year-olds such personal questions.
How many books have you written so far this year ?
Only a couple so far but normally I do about four or five each year
What's your favourite colour ?
Blurple followed by 62 followed by tandoori

Did you really hitch-hike to Brighton?
Most definitely and to quite a few other places too including Germany (but only when the war was finished)
When you wrote 'Dead Famous Elvis and his Pelvis' how did you find out all the little details, like his girl friends names, his weight before and after. Oh, and that he flew halfway across America for 22 giant hamburgers? I wondered this as I read your book for the 3rd time.
I read tons of books about him plus internet sites and I watched some films too. (then I ignored all that and made it up - ha!)
And how did you come up with all those jokes?
I subscribe to a dial-a-joke service. I ring them up and clowns on motor scooters deliver them to my front door (then fall over).
Maybe you should quit writing and be a full time comedian!
Lots of people have told me that (but thankfully not my editors - phew!)

What is your favourite book that you've written?
Oh no, now you’ve got them all muttering again .....
How long did it take you to write Elvis and his Pelvis?
About three months but I was doing two others at the same time, not to mention building my own en-suite dolphinarium.
Do you like chocolate?
Not half. I’m a two bar a day man - mainly the brown sort.

Heloise and Jonathan
We were  inspired by the introduction of Top 10 Ghost Stories - what made you think of writing about ghosts?
I used to be scared of them when I was little and thought I would be got by one if I didn’t get downstairs before the toilet had finished flushing (which is odd, because we lived in a bungalow). I also used to tell all the other kids on our street ghost stories as we sat on the kerb under the street lamp eating our bread and jam and sniffing each others’ armpits (yes, we were a sophisticated lot) . One night there was knock on our door at about eleven o’clock and my Mum woke  me up to stay that Mrs H from up the street had come to say that all her six kids were wide awake and petrified and groaning with terror because of the ghost  stories I’d told them so I had to get out of bed and go and explain to them that there was nothing to worry about as they were all just a figment of my imagination (the ghost stories, not the kids).

Just to ask, does your brain hurt a lot ?
All the time ... which is why I wrap my head in this wet towel filled with crushed ice  (cool, or what?).
Could you give me some tips on how to be a good author?
Yes - in my next email to you. But don’t start until I’ve made my first ten billion quid!
P.S Could you tell Chris Smedley his illustrations  are amazing!
Will do!

How many books have you written?
About 36 so far I think
And do you have any sisters or brothers?
No, I’ve never had any of them and I think it’s probably a bit late to get any now.
I've got two sisters unfortunately, I wish I didn't.
Ooer! When I was little, other kids used to feel sorry for me and lend me their unwanted brothers and sisters - but only if I paid them e.g  Tracey Murphy would lend me her extremely smelly and irritating six-year-old brother for two hours in exchange for a partly-sucked lollipop, a threepenny bit and a last week’s copy of the Beano. Expensive, yes (but I was grateful for small Murphys).

Best wishbones to you all



Hello to Class 6 and Mr Dyer

Bonjour / Bon Jovi / Bonjela

Swift email today .... more tomorrow.
Are you all in the middle of your SATs ? If so, don't read this email as it may affect your results / render you incapable of normal thought / make all your teeth fall out / scramble your thinking-tackle.

The other week I had a short holiday on the island of Madeira which is in the Atlantic Ocean south of Portugal, west of Morocco (and a swift bus ride from Basildon). It belongs to Portugal who baggsed it when they found it about 500 years ago as in :- 'Oh look ... a blinking great island covered in trees and full of no people! Let's have it! OK then ... THE END (shucks! that sort of thing never happens to me)

It is famous for ...
its flowers ...  blooming brilliant (stop yawning) - its scrummy yellow Madeira cake (stop drooling) - it is also covered in thousands of old-beige pensioners (do you have these in Brighton?)

but the best / worst bits for me were ...

a) walking around and hearing parroty-sounding 'birds' all screeching, roaring, cackling and hooting incredibly noisily but not being able to see them anywhere no matter how hard we looked then realising  it wasn't birds at all but hundreds of incredibly stroppy, little, striped amphibians which were obviously some sort of utterly fearless and terrifying cross between a frog, a pit-bull terrier and a cyber-pixie who were forever jumping on each other and scrapping ferociously whilst yelling out all manner of insults and horrendous swear words (but all in Frog, so as not to offend the old-beige pensioners)
all very entertaining ... until they jump out of their pond and come leaping towards you screeching and honking, having mistaken you for a particularly large, potential husband / wife / rival ( I  knew it was a mistake to wear my spotty green hiking suit)

b) mountain walking ... or in my case, mountain-crawling (i.e. gibbering in terror on my hands and knees with my eyes closed ) along 30cm wide crumbling cliff-face paths next to 500 metre sheer drops which would have made an eagle dizzy

c) coming round a corner on a wild mountain footpath and suddenly finding myself face to face with a pack of wild dogs ( i.e. wuffians)
what happened next?

I am now back in my scribblarium and am faced with a difficult choice. I have got a heap of writing ideas in front of me which I have now narrowed down to  just these two for today .....
a) 10 short daft horror stories
b) a book about how to look after pet mammoths
which to go for? - vote now!

Best wishes

Hi Michael,

Year 6 have had a strange week - one day off for Bank Holiday, one day off while the school was used as a polling booth, interviews for our new headteacher and revision for SATS (next week).

Here are a few more questions for you -

I have been reading your book nightmare on Eck street and I thought it was really good, I like it because it really sets the scene and gives you the picture clearly.
I would like to ask you a few Questions.
1. Did you get any of your characters from real people?
2. Who is your hero (which writer)?

I have been reading your book Agincourt.
1. What gave you the idea to write this kind book?
2. The battle of Agincourt did happen, but did you make up the character, Jenkin Lloyd?
3. At the top of my book it says "My Story". Is Agincourt a true story of what happened to you?
4. If this is true, then I would like to know if you are a time traveler, an immortal, very old or something else.
From Joe McCormack

I'm now reading Top Ten Ghost Stories, even though my book came late in the post I am nearly finished. That's how much I am glued to your book. It really is scary, I can't read it at night
because of nightmares. My favourite story so far is probably The Turn Of The Screw but I am changing my mind all the time.
My friend Daisy is also reading the book, me and my friends (including Daisy) have tried to contact the dead using the tips in your book. Did you ever try to contact them when you were our age (11) or have you tried recently? If you have were you answered? And what did you ask?
And did you do it again or did it frighten you so much that you vowed never to do it again? It certainly scared the wits out of me!

We'll try and fit a vote in on Monday on which book you should write next!

Best Wishes

Dear Dave Dyer and Year Sixpence

You have had a busy week, haven't you? Do you really get to interview the candidates for your new headteacher's job? Wow! What sort questions did you ask them?

Now, some answers to your questions to me (and some more tomorrow)
1. Did you get any of your characters from real people?
Yes, the Blodvat sisters: Scrofula, Diptheria and Bacteria, are based on three of my old girlfriends - as you can see, I had impeccable good taste.
2. Who is your hero (which writer)? Groan-up books : John Irving
Children’s books :  Bob Wilson

I have been reading your book Agincourt.
1. What gave you the idea to write this kind book?
I was walking across Blackheath Common in London where my son used to live when I was suddenly struck by this idea /old lady with an umbrella /  low flying goose. It’s a huge, open, grassy area where thousands of victims from the Great Plague were chucked into dirty great pits (mainly when they were dead), which is one of the reasons  it was never built on. It’s also where Wat Tyler (along with his less famous brothers: Wat Carpetfitter and Wat Bricklayer) got together with his revolting peasants  and cried “Let’s trounce the toffs!” prior to being stabbed to death (as he said at the time, 'Is this bad luck .. or Wat?). However, more significantly, for me, it was where King Henry V and his lads were given their jubilant welcome by the people of London on their victorious return from Agincourt (after which they did six laps of the Common in an open-topped double-decker bus).
2. The battle of Agincourt did happen, but did you make up the character, Jenkin Lloyd? Yes, Jenkin is a fig roll of my imagination. It was actually quite difficult  to get a handle on how he would react to going to France. In those days most people couldn’t read or write,  spent their entire life labouring on the local  farm, never travelled more than three or four miles from the village they were born in and usually ended up marrying their cousin (or their favourite carthorse).
So, for Jenkin, going off to France would be like you lot suddenly being told that Uncle Tony Blair was whisking you all off to the Planet Zlob (3 million light years away) to  fight the evil three-headed, fifteen legged, poison-spitting Potato people, famous for sticking their eighteen foot proboscis down your ear hole and sucking out all your common sense, one brain cell at a time.
At the top of my book it says "My Story". Is Agincourt a true story of what happened to you?  If this is true, then I would like to know if you are a time traveler, an immortal, very old or something else.
All three to be frank ( or Michael, or Cuthbert). I’m off to watch Hannibal take his elephants across the Alps this arvo.  Actually, amazing true fact here (but not for the squeamish). Did you know that Hannibal's elephant drivers / pilot / jockeys?  carried a huge big hammers and spikes round with them. This was because the elephants occasionally turned round mid-battle and charged back at their own side squidging soldiers willy nilly as they went?  As the Carthaginians hadn’t yet got round to fitting the elephants with hand brakes or electronic stability programmes, the hammer and spike was the only thing they had to get them to stop. Uuuurgh! Bet you wished you’d never asked me that!
Good luck with your Slow Agonizing Tortures - Sit And Tiddles - Spicy Ant Puddings - Seriously Aggressive Tortoises  ...



Hi Michael,

SATs week - so not much time to email, but we did have a quick vote on which book you should work on next. The results were:

    10 short daft horror stories  - 23 votes

    A book about how to look after pet mammoths - 8 votes

So, not surprisingly with this class, horror proves more popular!


Dear Class 6 and Dave,

Thanks for the vote. I'm working on it.
Hope your SATs went brilliantly and you have all scored huge amounts of points causing your parents / guardians to
a) buy you new bikes and clothes and stuff
b) decide to start feeding you again c) feel really inferior in view of your vastly superior intelligence, knowledge and wisdom

Now,  I'll  briefly up date you on my currant goings-on - as I can't see a raisin why not to ...
A) I have mainly been writing this week  (bet that came as a surprise)
B) The ducks who live in our garden arrived with 10 tiny ducklets the other day, the next day there were only 6 and now there are only 3. Those parent ducks are  are so careless with their children!  But I suppose it keeps the bills down.
And now, here is the answer to Molly's question about me and Ghosts
Q: Did you ever try to contact them when you were our age (11) or have you tried recently?
MC: No I never did. They always contacted me first. No, not really, I was too scared. But, when I was a 10-something, just around the corner from our house there was
a) a big wild wood
b) an old-fashioned gypsy camp with painted caravans and horses (the horses weren’t painted, just the caravans) 
c) a canal with half-sunken wooden barges d) masses of fantastic giant steam trains thundering up and down the main Midlands railway line. In other words a really brilliant place to grow up!

The big wild wood was said to be haunted by the ghost of a bloke who had died there whilst picking blue bells during the 1930s ( eight-foot-tall, killer blue bells were quite common in those days). In the daytime, this wood was where we built underground dens, lit camp fires, strung up rope ladders and swung from tree to tree like the bunch of scruffy, little Neanderthals we were. However, at night, all the kids from our street would dare each other to go into these woods on their own and face the ghost of Blue Bell Jack (as he was known). It was incredibly dark in there and really, really scary with unseen ‘creatures’ such as foxes, owls and badgers all snuffling and growling and hooting (and believe me, there’s nothing more terrifying than the hoot of a wild badger), so you had to to be really brave (or stupid) to stay in there for more than about half a minute. Quite often, the smaller, more timid kids would come running out screaming, with their eyes popping out and their hair standing on end because they thought they’d just seen Jack’s ghost (or remembered that their library book was overdue). However, the worst things that actually ever happened to us in these woods were a) having to stay at the top of a tree all day because the dogs from the gypsy camp wanted to sniff and lick you all over (as they got ready to eat you) b) falling into the canal after losing your grip on the rope swing, getting covered in frog spawn and slime from head to toe, standing in front of a camp fire in an attempt to dry out but only ending up feeling really ill having been asphyxiated by the camp fire smoke. Then, as if that wasn’t all bad enough, having to explain to your mum why your clothes were all charred and your hair was full of barbecued tadpoles.

IMPORTANT SAFETY NOTE:  Sadly, nowadays, just as with hitch-hiking, it would be incredibly DANGEROUS to do the going-into-the-woods-after-dark thing, so don’t try it! The world has changed loads in the last 50 years, including that wood, which is now a housing estate. And would you believe it, the builders had the cheek to build a massive great pub built right on top of our best den. The nerve of it!
Err, what was the question?

Best wishlets



Dear Class 6 and Dave
Ayup (as they say round our way). For some light relief after your  gruelling / piece of cake / thrilling  SATs here are some ungruelling   daft wind-up notices , letters and multiple choice daftness for you to  fill in / pass to your parents / friends/ guardians / gerbils.
Hope you enjoy doing them.

Best wishes

FIRST ONE - WRITE OUR OWN (OR YOUR FRIEND'S) END OF YEAR REPORT - just  fill in your name (or your pal's name) then choose and go
End Of Year Report For   .............................
ENGLISH - ................. has a unique and remarkable talent for  producing exciting stories / massive ‘glow - the - dark ’ bogies /   rabbits out of  top hats
Handwriting - .................’s  handwriting is immaculate /  frightening / loopy
MATHS - .................. ‘s mathematical ability is second only to  that of Einstein / a house brick /  a hamster’s bottom.
ART - ................... ‘s artistic abilities are breathtaking /  nonexistent / messy.
I suggest that ............  is encouraged to pursue a career as an  artist / taken to see an optician / kept away from art materials for  the rest of their life.
MUSIC - .............. has the ear / voice /   underpants  of ... Van  Gogh / Beethoven / Robbie Williams  and should look forward to / avoid  at all costs / strive for  a career as a concert pianist / burglar  alarm / monk (completely silent type) .
SPORT - .................... has all the athletic ability of ....  Linford Christie / a carrot / a  potato crisp. Their attempt at the 100  gas meter hurdles / synchronised skipping / walking in a straight line   was ... hilarious / a danger to all concerned / superbly successful .
GENERAL ATTITUDE  - ..................... is a smelly heap of wombat’s  doings / hardworking  and pleasant child / useful ( but hopelessly dim  ) chalk monitor who at all times tries his / her / its level best to  produce superb work / win the caretaker’s wages off him at poker /  spend all day in the lavs
CLASS TEACHER’S GENERAL COMMENT - I can genuinely / slimily / not  say  that teaching this lovely child / apology for a human being / small  furry mammal  .......................  - has been a complete pleasure /  nightmare / out of body experience. I wish them the best of luck / best  of six / to be locked up forever and the key thrown away.
......................... - Class Teacher
HEADTEACHER’S COMMENT -  Number .... otherwise known as ............   is a pleasant /  evil and putrid / astonishingly tall   .... boy / girl  / dinner lady  who is a waste of space  / big dollop of sticky pudding  / credit  to the school and I am looking forward to seeing the ten quid  they owe me / them do just as well next year / your whole family move  out of this area .............................. Headteacher


Important Changes To School Dinner Menu
Dear parent / guardian
You may have already seen reports in the national press regarding an  important eating survey coupled with  extensive scientific tests that  came up with surprise results regarding the nutritional value of  certain food stuffs. As you will no doubt appreciate - we make every  effort to ensure that the growing children in our care benefit from the  greatest variety of fresh and nourishing ingredients - we have  therefore decided to implement the  following improved weekly  menu  which will take effect from ..../ ..../....
MONDAY -  Starter -  Scab Salad  ( freshly picked, of course)  -  Main  course - Swamp rat cutlet in housefly sauce  or Giant African land  snail in giblet jelly with delicious dandruff topping - Sweet -  Tortoise Crunch  or Lemming Meringue Pie
TUESDAY - Starter - Septic spot soup with cold-sore croutons   orWart’dolph salad
Main course - Roast Turk with mange and bunion stuffing, thistle flan  and potatoes a la Ditchesse  Sweet - Dung Beetle Delight
WEDNESDAY   - Starter -  Vermin Cocktail  or Greasy Hair Pie  Main  course - Sizzling, stir fried spleen of stinkbug, lightly tossed in  warm maggot mayonnaise  or Chef’s special ! Scrumptious pan festered  baboon buttocks in a black bilge sauce . Sweet - Blow Fly Fudge  or  Saliva Surprise
THURSDAY -  Old favourites day Main course - Hot ‘dogs’ -  choice of  flavours .. Spaniel, Golden Retriever, Highland Terrier  .. or Toad  Spawn In The Hole or Welsh Rabies  or Bangers And Trash - all served  with  Scrambled Dregs and Snot Roast Vegetables
Sweet - Apple and Sainsberry Pie with Mice Cream or Black Ferret Gateau  ( yummeee! )
FRIDAY - Starter - Goldfish gizzard in chilli ‘vinaigrette’  Main  course -  Wart-hog hash swimming in lashings of  delicious gopher gut  gravy. Sweet - Bluebottle Blancmange or Bathscum Cheese

We have your child’s health at heart and would therefore encourage you  to tick box A, B, or C - then sign and return the attached tear off  strip to their class teacher .
Yours sincerely ......................... Head Of  School Catering  Service

------------------------------------------------------------------------ ----------------------------------------
I wish my child  ................. to A - stay for school dinners B -   to be held down by the dinner ladies and force fed school dinners C -  to be made to eat  school dinners plus the  other children’s left overs  D -  not to stay school dinners at all and to be allowed to go to the  chip shop / take-away / burger bar etc every single school day !
...............................     School


Dear ......
I am writing to explain why my son / daughter ...............  is  unable to hand in their homework this morning. During the past twenty  four hours our family has had a rather strange /  terrifying /  enriching  experience and I am quite sure that when you read about it  you will feel very tearful for / jealous of / sympathetic towards   .................. .
The whole of this hilarious / gut wrenching / weird and inexplicable   episode began at about six o’clock yesterday evening just as the whole  family were splashing about in the bath / sitting down to tea / trying  to out stare the cat. All of a sudden we heard bellowing / people  shouting in French  / the doorbell  and looked out to see that our  little house was completely surrounded by thousands and thousands of  eighteenth century French peasants / overexcited wildebeestes  / Avon  ladies  who were all pawing the ground /  smiling insincerely / shaking  their fists and spitting contemptuously .  As we listened in amazement  to their cries of personal discomfort /‘Down wiz ze stinky aristocrats  !’  / ‘Avon Calling’ and the blood curdling sounds of facial makeovers  being applied  / huge dollops of dung hitting the ground / a guillotine  being erected in our front garden  it suddenly dawned on us that the  .............s wanted us to milk them / to cut off our heads /  to sell  us some banana flavoured skin cream which was all very upsetting and  frightening especially as we haven’t got Royal blood  /  banana  flavoured skin / a bucket.
We immediately rang the police / Citizens Advice Bureau  / our hands in  terror  and screamed for assistance  / some Rich Tea biscuits / Esther  Rantzen  but the ................ told us they couldn’t help because  they were far too busy / thick / frightened to be of much use and said  that they would send round a home help / Alan Titchmarsh / an  undertaker  to tidy up our flower beds / grisly remains / front room  the very next day.
At this point our plucky son / daughter ............... said, “Well  someone’s got to do something !”  and they ran outside and bravely  began bargaining with /  slapping / milking  the ............. s .  After about fifteen minutes / seconds / hours  of savage and ferocious,  hand to hand fighting / udder squeezing / nail care demonstrations    the ............ began to sqabble amongst themselves / moo contentedly  / hand over  their  entire supply of all in one shampoo and conditioner   and we were finally able to finish our tea  / have our bath /  humiliate the cat.
The next morning the only thing that was left to remind us of this  strange occurence was a huge pile of  country pancakes / false  eyelashes /  dead aristocrats  on our front lawn and we all felt really  relieved / absolutely gorgeous / a right load of ninnies.
So that is why ............... has not handed in their homework.
Yours sincerely   ........................
Parent or guardian of  ...............
PS - This sort of thing is / is not  a regular occurence in our street  and we are very proud of ................. and hope that you will give  them an extra day / a couple of weeks / fifteen years  to finish the  work  in view of the circumstances.

Dear parents,
Well - here it is again - our fascinating annual / termly / pathetic   account of  all of the wonderful / stupid / disgusting things that have   been  happening at .............   School.
1. School Fund  - We are pleased / reluctant / not going to tell you  that the recent school fair / auction of unwanted children  /  brilliantly planned bank robbery raised 5p / £5,000,000 / a big laugh.  This pathetic / fabulous / measly  sum will now be put towards  providing a new  computer / set of false teeth / Rolls Royce  for class  ... /  my gran / the Director Of Education
2. Parking -  Your co-operation is needed - Mr ............ our  caretaker, has informed us that despite many previous warnings /  executions / batterings some parents are still parking their cars /  camels / flying saucers  in the infant playground / boys’ toilets /  deputy head’s trouser pocket  - if this practise continues we will be  forced to slap an ASBO on you / let your tyres down / hold your  children to ransome.
3.  Lost property - We have an ever growing pile of lost property which  now includes 3,000 white anoraks / a front door  / an extremely smelly  baby / the Lost City of Atlantis / Kylie Minogue.  On all of  the lost property will be put on display in the hall / made into tasty  snacks / given a good talking to
4. School Trip - Class ...’s annual trip to Outer Mongolia  /Twycross  Zoo / the loo  was a tremendous success / shambles / disgrace. During  the trip all of the children took part in lots of exciting / banned /  totally pointless activities like invading China / washing their hands  / feeding the coach driver with stick insects.  The high point of the  whole trip came on ....... when ......... of class .... was eaten by a  hippopotamus / appointed Mayor of Ulan Bator / snogged by a penguin.
5. Visits To School - Last the whole school spent a miserable /  shocking / enjoyable .... five seconds / half hour / two days  when the  vicar / some mice / the whole population of Manchester  gave us a  fascinating / boring / nauseating talk and slide show on the history of  mud / knitting prize winning cardigans for profit and pleasure / the  secret life Mr / Mrs / Ms. ............ of class ..
6. Staff Changes - We are delighted / regret to inform you /  unbelievably relieved  that after many happy  years / five minutes /  three centuries  of .. teaching /  filing his  nails / being an  inspiration to us all  Mr / Mrs / Ms... of class .... will be leaving  to take up a new post as an education  lecturer / exotic dancer /  gorilla-gramme and we wish him/  her / it  every success in their new  job / swimming trunks / tree house. You will no doubt be pleased to  know that they are to be replaced by a very  experienced and brilliant  teacher / orang-utan / loo brush.
7. Collection Of Unwanted Items - If any of you have any old Highland  cattle / grandparents / tin cans  that are no longer of any use to you  we would be grateful to receive them for our recycling campaign. Before  sending them in we would ask you to give them a thorough scrub / remove  their sticky labels / make sure they’ve been to the toilet
8.  Vacancy For A School Governor - A vacancy has arisen on the board  of governor’s due to the retirement / imprisonment / impending madness   of .......... . If you are at least six feet tall / like fighting /  want to make a quid or two on the side, no questions asked  please  apply in writing / send a thousand pounds in a plain brown envelope  to  me, the headteacher.
That’s it for now - the next news letter will be out in my garden / a  jiffy / space / three months .
Yours woefully / wonderfully / bewilderedly  - .................. -  Headteacher
Dear Parents / Guardians of  ...............
Congratulations -  aren’t you  the lucky ones ! I just had to write  this letter because I am absolutely bursting  to let you know just how  well your amazing son / daughter,  ................ is doing at school  at the moment. To give you an indication of the sheer  hyperwonderfulness of this superchild of yours here are  just a few    of the phenomenal personal triumphs and good deeds they’ve added to  their evergrowing list of achievements ... in just one week !!
General - Got ‘A+’; ‘10 out of10’ and  ‘flipping triffic’ for every  single piece of work they’ve produced  - plus astonishing 15 out  of 10   in  Thursday’s spelling test.
In addition to which, on :-
Monday -   .........    took over the school assembly when the  headteacher was  called to the phone then read story in such a moving  manner that it brought tears to the eyes of whole school
Tuesday -    ............. comforted and gave first aid to the rather  short sighted student teacher who mistook  our school caretaker for a  Year Six boy and foolishly tried to make him take part in  his PE  lesson.
Wednesday -   ............   lay across a particularly muddy  puddle in  the playground to form a human bridge so that all of the Year One  children wouldn’t get their shoes dirty.
Thursday -     ........   offered to be ‘the lollipop’ after  our  school crossing lady broke hers on the head of a motorist who failed to  obey her ‘stop’ signal
Friday -    ........   gave  the school secretary a good ticking off  for  doing mad gorilla impressions behind the headteacher’s back
Plus ! - they’ve also helped the dinner ladies with the washing up  every single lunch time this week!
......... ’s sheer brilliance has now become so legendary that the  other teachers have begun to squabble over whose class they will be in  next year. We’ve even received a massive transfer fee offer from   ..................... School who are desperate to get ...............  on their books!
How ever did you manage to produce such a perfect young human being ?  You are obviously a very remarkable ( and proud ) set of parents /  guardians yourselves. It only remains for me to ask you to reward  .............. as soon as possible with one or all of the following  richly deserved treats :-
* An outfit of trendy new clothes ( top designer label stuff of course!)
* A mountain bike ( nothing cheap or tacky mind you )
* A fortnight at Disney World
* A  helicopter flight to a destination of their choice
* A  500 % increase in pocket money (back dated to their 0th birthday )

Yours, forever gratefully

......................... Class teacher



Dear Michael,

Sorry to be a bit slow replying, but BT managed to cut off our Internet line from last Tuesday round till today. Year 5 have been using your report generator to assess their own performance over the last year. Here are a couple of examples:


ENGLISH - Chloe has a unique and remarkable talent for producing massive ‘glow - in- the - dark ’ bogies. Handwriting - Chloe’s handwriting is loopy.

MATHS - Chloe ‘s mathematical ability is second only to a hamster’s bottom.

ART - Chloe ‘s artistic abilities are breathtaking. I suggest that Chloe is encouraged to pursue a career as an artist.

MUSIC - Chloe has the ear of Robbie Williams and should look forward to a career as a burglar alarm .

SPORT - Chloe has all the athletic ability of a potato crisp.

GENERAL ATTITUDE - Chloe is a pleasant child - useful, but hopelessly dim.

CLASS TEACHER’S GENERAL COMMENT - Teaching this lovely small furry mammal- Chloe - has been a complete nightmare. I wish her to be locked up forever and to throw away the key because she says I'm fat. Chloe has taken over the school and is the Head Teacher.

HEADTEACHER’S COMMENT - Chloe otherwise known as evil and smelly. l am looking for a new dinner lady who is a waste of space and also dollop of sticky pudding. I think Chloe is very smelly with a hint of dog droppings. She is no credit to the school and I am happy to say she will not be attending any more because she ate all of the schools property and ate a lot of students during class and will go to prison and I wish she is never coming out.



ENGLISH - Conor has a unique and remarkable talent for producing rabbits out of top hats. Handwriting Conor’s handwriting is frightening- why did you send him here?

MATHS - Conor ‘s mathematical ability is second only to that of a house-brick.

ART - Conor‘s artistic abilities are non-existent . I suggest that Conor is encouraged to keep away from art materials for the rest of his life.

MUSIC - Conor has the ear of Van Gogh and should look forward to striving for a career as a monk (completely silent type) . SPORT - Conor has all the athletic ability of a carrot. His attempt at the 100 gas meter hurdles was a danger to all.

GENERAL ATTITUDE -Conor is a smelly heap of wombat’s doings.

CLASS TEACHER’S GENERAL COMMENT - I can genuinely say that teaching this apology for a human being - Conor- has been a completely nightmare experience. I wish him to be locked up forever and the key thrown away. . - Class Teacher

HEADTEACHER’S COMMENT - Number 4545454627 otherwise known as 'That' is an evil and putrid small boy who is a big dollop of sticky pudding. You owe me £100 and I hope your whole family move out of this area. ................................................ Headteacher


The children were outraged by your proposals for reforming school dinners!

Year 5 and Year 6 are all looking forward to seeing you on Thursday.

Best Wishes


Our Year 5 and 6 classes went to the Old Market Theatre to hear Michael give a talk at the opening event of '26 letters' -the children's section of Brighton Festival's literary events. They were very amused by the talk and formed an extremely long queue to get their books autographed and cartooned!