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On playground duty, I was approached by a pair of outraged five-year-olds who told me that their friend Stephen was eating worms. I hotfooted it over to the suspect, who was standing suspiciously close to the flower bed.

"Stephen, are you eating worms?" I demanded.

"No, Mrs Freeman," he replied indignantly.

I was greatly relieved as I was unsure what sanctions should follow worm eating. Was a trip to the office for first aid required, or maybe even an emergency emetic?

"Good. It isn't very nice to eat worms, is it Stephen?" "No, Mrs Freeman," he answered. "That's why I was only sucking them."

GILLIAN FREEMAN

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