Training Material: Nutmeg Gets in Trouble

 Nutmeg Gets in Trouble
Judith Foxon and Sarah Rawlings,
British Agencies for Adoption and
ISBN 1903699975, £12


Nutmeg the squirrel must be a familiar figure to most adopted children of primary age and this latest instalment of his adventures will doubtless be well received, writes Clea Barry.

As far as I am aware, this is the only book for adopted children that focuses on school. Every page includes familiar issues – making Mothers’ Day cards, deciding what to tell other children, bullying and wanting to fit in. These are all such vital issues that the book must be considered essential for social workers and parents.

The book has several uses. First, it can spark family discussions about school issues. Second, the calm and confident approach modelled by Nutmeg’s family will help adopters deal with their children’s difficulties. Third, it would be a useful tool for preparing adopters and teachers because it communicates Nutmeg’s feelings much better than a grown up book would.

The practice guidelines at the back are good explanations of the theory and research behind the story and offer more ideas for work with children.

There is not much magic or humour in it so it is not a book the children will ask for again at bedtime. But there’s not much else out there, so you have to get this.

Clea Barry is an adoption social worker, Hackney Council, east London


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