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Learning to fly

In Little Owl's Book of Thinking by Ian Gilbert (Crown House Publishing, Pounds 4.99) an older bird acts as philosophical tutor to a chick that's barely out of the egg. Aspects of the world of ornithology - learning to spread your wings, catch mice, perch in trees - become analogues for the growth of human thought. Short humorous parables identify the central principles of a developed mind -the need for flexibility and strength, the recognition of different kinds of right answer, the knowledge that you do not always know. There's much here for key stage 1 children and their adult mentors.

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