Stick insects


Eliza won the right to look after her new class teacher’s stick insects for the summer holiday. Initially, Eliza was keen to play with them: taking them from their enclosure and holding them while they swayed and bowed to music. Her mood changed when one of the three insects died. She was fearful of killing her teacher’s insect collection and became reluctant to hold or touch them. Then one day, she spotted a baby stick insect and a week later another one. All looks set for her to return to school with a net increase in stick insect population.


So often carefree or brave, Robin has a fear of dogs. In the park he scuttles back to us when he sees a dog coming and cowers by my or L’s legs. He’s not suffered a fright that could explain this reaction and it is as severe for small dogs as it is for the many breeds that stand taller than he.


Gabe has a deep-seated need to follow rules, even ones that only exist in his imagination. An infraction to which he is a party causes him enormous angst. I signed him up for an on-line game using a made-up email address – not wanting to use my one and his own was already registered but he couldn’t remember the password. He sobbed and fretted about what I had done – stealing someone’s email address – refusing to play the game, until I agreed to submit my own genuine email address.


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