Word play

Where do words come from? How do they come to be? Who says a pen has to be called a pen and what would happen if we suddenly decided to call it something else?

Andrew Clements' absorbing novel Frindle (Simon and Schuster pound;9.99) is a thought-provoking, irreverent and funny exploration of the origins of words.

Nick Allen is a sharp, lateral-thinking 10-year-old, full of mischief, admired by his peers for his ability to distract teachers with off-beat and gloriously time-wasting questions.

But when he tries to stop Mrs Granger from giving out a dictionary exercise by asking the seemingly innocent question "Where do all these words come from?", he kick-starts a battle of wits which leads to Nick adopting a new word for his pen - "frindle" - with far-reaching consequences.

This story, which Clements writes with great clarity and incisive humour, would make an excellent basis for word games with upper primary children.

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you