Wayside school dating love
Wayside school dating love
Tanisha Reynolds jumped at the chance to run Wayside Community Centre two years ago, because she has always got on with older people.“Maybe I’m an old soul,” mused the 36-year-old.She started off as a volunteer at the centre, which caters for over-50s in Lower Clapton Road with the likes of armchair workouts, guitar lessons and knitting.
But, after the things that happened in , what would you expect?She went to Clapton Girls secondary school, then Hackney Community College.She likes hearing about the experiences of women who come to the centre, some of whom were among the first Caribbean migrants to arrive in the UK.“You get to hear what it was like when they first arrived in the country and what it was like back home, and the changes they have seen,” said Tanisha, who now has a 15-year-old daughter herself.It was set up by Sister Jean John nearly 30 years ago for people who were vulnerable or depressed so they could find friendship and companionship.“I think older people have much more life experience,” said Tanisha.“They’re more patient – they have a lot more to share. They are welcoming, engaging and funny.“They always tell you to be independent and be strong and love everyone – those are my top tips from these guys.”Tanisha was born in Jamaica and found it scary to emigrate aged 14 to London, which was “more advanced and faster than what you are used to”.I just reread before this interview, and I was surprised by how contemporary they feel. And in fact if you do put technological things in, they quickly become dated. Jewls shoves it out the window to teach the kids about gravity. So I referred to this computer, this brand-new computer that got brought to Mrs. Oh, I just always liked puzzles and games, and so I had fun making them up.
In the first chapter of the second book, this heavy package gets delivered for Mrs. Jewls' class as "it has two-disc drive, full-color monitor" — my computer at the time was just black and amber. Has there been any talk of updating stuff like that? It still sounds fancy if you don't really look at the words — a computer with two disc drives! I remember a few years ago, Scholastic re-released the first few books in the series changing a few references — an MP3 player instead of a Walkman, stuff like that. But at the same time, it seems like they're not trusting a kid to understand that these books weren't written this year— and just because they weren't written recently doesn't mean they're not valuable. And there's a difference between books like , which he doesn't understand. When I made those puzzles, I made them to entertain myself. So it was almost unfair to put those in a kids' book.
That’s something you don’t see in a lot of kid’s books – she’s not this hard-charging heroine. It’s straight out of a late-night, sci-fi horror movie. That was also part of the inspiration –- I’d never written a scary book. ”Right, and if you now have a kid of your own and you’re trying to protect them in every single way, it’s like “Oh, this is going to scare them." Technology doesn't figure much into the — there's a biotech company creating the "frankengerms," but the kids aren't really using computers and cell phones.
She’s kind of quiet and kind of shy, and has to be put into adversity before she can find the strength inside of her. [It] seems like most female characters in children’s books are these kind of sassy, spunky kids. Did you do that on purpose to make the book feel more timeless?
is also a bit of a puzzle book — it's got all these pieces that you had to assemble. But because I do puzzles for fun, it's just part of my regular thinking process, trying to figure out how to put holes together. When I would set out to write these stories, I never knew what was going to happen in them.
I had all kinds of concerns when I wrote that book. Finally, I was also wondering — the story about Sammy, the dead rat disguised in layers of raincoats, has stuck with me for years and years. And with Sammy, I just started with the kid with the raincoats.
You wrote after working with a group of elementary schoolers when you were in college. And even if they saw their names, I don't think they would think, "Oh, that's based on me." So as far as I know, the kids don't know it.