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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Nov 2017, 19:33 
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I was born in the 1940s. I was never smacked or hit in any way at school, remember being smacked just once by my father; my brother, cousin and I had been expressly told not to play in a local sand extraction pit, becaiuse it was dangerous - but we did. My brotherand I got smacked, but not my cousin because "she wasn't his child". I could see his point,but I still thought it wasn't fair! I was about 10 at the time, and they were 9 and 8.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Nov 2017, 19:50 
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Joyce - Mother's selective memory must have made it difficult. The school punishments also sound tough.

Ivohenry - Especially when a child anything unfair rankles.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Nov 2017, 20:39 
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My mother never regretted her physical punishments. They were for our own good and we should have been obedient. :shock: To be fair, it didn't happen often, but I can recall one morning when she chased me round the kitchen table to give me smack. I was 16!! :roll: I don't feel in any way angry about it all. That was the way it was - as it was at school. I was the first girl at my junior school to get the slipper, when they stopped caning the girls. That happened in 1955, and I have no idea why, as I was very timid child. There was, however, no physical punishment at my convent grammar school from 1957 onwards, and I never saw any physical punishments in any school when I started teaching in 1969 - although I did see some in some of my teaching practice schools up to that time.

Yes, Richenda's dad was harsh, but he expected her to respect his wishes, and she didn't. He was so wrapped up in his ceramics he didn't try to understand her, but she was still wrong. in the end, of course, it all worked out well, as they learned to understand each other, thanks to other people's wisdom.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 05 Aug 2018, 22:03 
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Sorry for resurrecting thread, but I'm re-reading this one now and I definitely liked it. Thoughts:
- Joey comes across really well in this book, and her butting-in is definitely warranted. Both sides needed to be called out. Both Ricki and her dad have a point, but they're both too stubborn and / or clueless to try and understand each other, and Ricki was a proper little Kevin at times. It's a shame it takes Ricki nearly getting blinded for them to bond, but it also shows that Professor Richardson really does love her, even if he's not great at showing it, and they do get on better afterwards and he makes more of an effort to understand her. And I agree that it was very kind of Joey to let Ricki come and stay with them over the holidays, especially given that she was ill. She went out of her way to make sure Ricki didn't feel left out.
- The corporal punishment bit didn't bother me, because that's just how things were back then. EBD is a little heavy-handed with the idea that Junior needed a good spanking to keep him in line and / or he was a horrible little brat because Mommy didn't spank him enough. Though I don't blame the teachers for being angry, because what he did to Ricki was pretty horrific. She's lucky she didn't go blind.
- Someone on the old thread said EBD knew very little about ceramics and it showed. Anyone care to comment on this?
- Joan Baker deserved better.
- I like the Christmas plays more than the pantos. I got Excitements last week and the panto in it made me cringe, Nina saving the day aside. (Why is Aladdin always Chinese? I thought it was an Arabian story.)


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 11:28 
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lotte wrote:
Someone on the old thread said EBD knew very little about ceramics and it showed. Anyone care to comment on this?
By 'the old thread' do you mean the previous posts on this one, or an earlier topic where this book has been discussed (I think I'm right in saying there have been at least two cycles of discussing the CS series volume by volume)?

I don't think we know how much she knew about ceramics, or whether they interested her, although she talks in Gay about Madge's china collection on display in the house. I suspect that she didn't have Prof Fry's level of expertise in any aspect of the subject, though she probably appreciated what was considered in good taste - Chelsea, Spode etc. I can't actually find anything as blunt as 'knew very little and it showed' on here, but perhaps I've missed it.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 12:54 
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It's from the Archive. It's this one. The quote is less blunt than I remembered it.
Quote:
The things I wasn't so keen on was that EBD quite obviously knows nothing about ceramics - and, for that matter, nor does Ricki, really. OK, she's interested and sees them around a lot, but her father doesn't teach or even talk to her about the. So how can she make the decision to "go in for" ( my, how I hate that expression. They're always "going in" for stuff) ceramics, or even make the decision specifically about Chinese ceramics?


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 14:15 
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Ricki was only 14 at that point, I think. At that age, Ros was planning to be an air hostess - and, a year later, had decided she preferred the idea of being a gardener, which is quite a change in plans - and Joey was planning to be Elisaveta's maid of honour! Ideas often aren't fully-formed at that age.

It's a specialist area, so I don't suppose EBD did know much about it, or expected that her readers would. The actual ceramics and which dynasty they're from are only mentioned in the first couple of chapters. She wasn't setting out to write a book about ceramics, to be fair: she just needed a situation to create bad feeling between Ricki and Prof Fry, and was presumably looking for something a bit different.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 15:02 
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Ah, OK - thanks for that info, Lotte - not much discussion of it back then, though. Since Richenda's love of ceramics was supposed to have been 'inherited' from her father, I guess we're meant to be unsurprised about it and not wonder how she came by her knowledge. He may well have had reference books about it, of course, and/ or she could have had access to some at the local library or museum.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 15:34 
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See also :lol: :

David, Rix and Daisy (medicine) - follow in Jem's footsteps (also Margot, with Jack)
Julie (law) - plans to follow in Julian's footsteps until she packs it in
Con (writing) - plans to follow in Joey's footsteps
Lesley (accountancy) - plans to follow in dad's footsteps
Mary-Lou - OK, archaeology isn't butterfly-hunting, but same idea of travelling to obscure places
Sophie - goes into the family business
Ros (gardening) - plans to follow in dad's footsteps

The idea of going into the same career as a parent (or uncle/aunt) was a lot more common then that it is now, although ceramics is a fairly niche area.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 20:07 
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I liked the idea of her dad being a ceramics expert. It was a little different. And there aren't many characters who are into art. Vi is one exception, as is Sybil, and I think Clem got into painting later on (apples, trees etc.)


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 06 Aug 2018, 20:28 
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I think one of adult Joey's nicest moments is when she gives Ricki her envelope of half-term money. There's no fanfare, no fuss, no one waiting in the wings to extol Jo's amazing ability to understand girls. It's a quiet, motherly gesture for a girl who could use some warmth and understanding. I wish more of Jo's meddling was like this.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 10:42 
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mynameisdumbnuts wrote:
I think one of adult Joey's nicest moments is when she gives Ricki her envelope of half-term money.


I agree it was a nice thing for Joey to do because it shows she's treating Ricki like one of her own daughters.

But my parents would be most unhappy if a friend's parents gave me spending money at that age because they would feel obligated to return the favour. And they would feel they had lost face as in "does that mother think I can't afford to give my child spending money?"

What do other parents feel? Would you be upset if a friend's parents gave your child spending money? Or would you simply regard it as a friendly gesture with no obligation attached?

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 12:21 
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Joyce wrote:


What do other parents feel? Would you be upset if a friend's parents gave your child spending money? Or would you simply regard it as a friendly gesture with no obligation attached?

It seems to me to be a perfectly fine thing to do, especially if the child were to be going out on a trip with me and my children. My mother did it - she always took several of my friends along on outings, to the Festival of Britain, or to fairs etc and made sure we all got a little purse of coins from her.

I certainly would not have objected to my adult friends handing out some money to my children in their turn.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 15:05 
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First of all, I don't think Professor Fry was ever intended to know that Joey gave Richenda spending money (and quite possibly never did).

Secondly, I don't think that the money was the important thing here. She wanted to put Richenda on a level with her daughters (and the rest of the form) in that she was able to spend some money on herself and presents for others during half-term. Richenda had recieved minimal pocket money during the term, and nothing extra for half term, as many of the girls did. For Richenda to have been going out with the triplets and watching them spending money without too much concern would only have increased Richenda's resentment against her father, and Joey's aim at this point was to overcome at least some of that resentment and encourage tham to have a better relationship. The money (and it probably wasn't even very much) was part of that strategy.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 16:19 
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It's quite an interesting ethical dilemma, actually :lol: :lol: .

I think it's very kind of Joey to give Richenda some spending money - but I can see that parents might feel awkward about it, and feel that they were then obliged to reciprocate, although in this case it's unlikely that Prof Fry will ever find out.

However, it's not an ordinary instance of someone going on a day trip with the family of a friend/friends. Prof Fry has said that Richenda deserves to be punished for her bad behaviour, and that she is therefore not to go on the half term expedition or to have money to spend during half term. This doesn't usually happen: it's generally accepted that it's up to the school to decide if someone is to be forbidden from involvement in school activities, and that this isn't to be used as a punishment for bad behaviour at home. Not to mention the fact that it's incredibly mean! But the school does generally accept that parents' instructions are paramount: Ted Grantley, at 15, is not even allowed to have her hair cut without her mum's permission. So is it OK that Richenda gets to have a nice time after all? I think Prof Fry has handled it all very badly and that it's very nice of Joey to see that Richenda does enjoy herself, but it means that the instructions given by Richenda's dad are being overridden.

If Jo had said that Mike wasn't to have any treats because of his bad behaviour, and then she found out that the Emburys' tutor had taken him and the Embury boys out to (say) a funfair and bought them a load of cakes and ice cream, would she have been OK with that?

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 19:19 
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Lotte wrote:
- I like the Christmas plays more than the pantos. I got Excitements last week and the panto in it made me cringe, Nina saving the day aside. (Why is Aladdin always Chinese? I thought it was an Arabian story.)


The first version I read of Aladdin was the Ladybird version which has Aladdin as Chinese.
https://www.arranalexander.co.uk/aladdi ... 6001-p.asp

This article has more info about Chinese v Arabian Aladdin:
https://interestingliterature.com/2013/ ... t-aladdin/

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 22:49 
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Alison H wrote:
It's quite an interesting ethical dilemma, actually :lol: :lol: .

I think it's very kind of Joey to give Richenda some spending money - but I can see that parents might feel awkward about it, and feel that they were then obliged to reciprocate, although in this case it's unlikely that Prof Fry will ever find out.

However, it's not an ordinary instance of someone going on a day trip with the family of a friend/friends. Prof Fry has said that Richenda deserves to be punished for her bad behaviour, and that she is therefore not to go on the half term expedition or to have money to spend during half term. This doesn't usually happen: it's generally accepted that it's up to the school to decide if someone is to be forbidden from involvement in school activities, and that this isn't to be used as a punishment for bad behaviour at home. Not to mention the fact that it's incredibly mean! But the school does generally accept that parents' instructions are paramount: Ted Grantley, at 15, is not even allowed to have her hair cut without her mum's permission. So is it OK that Richenda gets to have a nice time after all? I think Prof Fry has handled it all very badly and that it's very nice of Joey to see that Richenda does enjoy herself, but it means that the instructions given by Richenda's dad are being overridden.

If Jo had said that Mike wasn't to have any treats because of his bad behaviour, and then she found out that the Emburys' tutor had taken him and the Embury boys out to (say) a funfair and bought them a load of cakes and ice cream, would she have been OK with that?




The question is what is the role of the School? If the School allows every parent to dictate what their individual child does all of the time, it would be impossible to run. In sending a child to school there is an acceptance that the school will make day-to-day decisions. In some cases those decisions will run against what the parent might have preferred or expressed. if that's not acceptable to the parent then they should not have sent their child to the school in the first place.

It is not the role of the School to punish Richenda for something that happened before she was a pupil and they certainly would not have taken her as a pupil on that basis. Professor Richardson in asking them to punish her over half-term is asking the School to act outside their reasonable role, and the role for which they are being paid. And he dumps that on them without warning - it's not as if he'd said when entering her to the school that this was going to happen thus giving the School a chance to say "No". Since he's not made any arrangements for half term and he's refused to agree to (pay for) for the School's arrangements, he's not really in a position to complain about someone who is actually doing him a favour.

The same thing applies to Mike. Joey can't tell the Embureys to punish Mike in a way that they might find unreasonable and especially in a way that may affect the other children. If she wants him punished in a specific way then she has to take responsibility for doing so.

Obviously if the School in taking Richenda had agreed to take her on a punishment basis then things might be different. Equally, if Joey agrees with the Embureys that Mike is to be punished in that way then she should be able to expect that that will happen. But that isn't what happened with Richenda


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 09 Aug 2018, 23:52 
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janetbrown23 wrote:
He is following Matey.


Love this idea, perhaps that’s why she gets so determined to take people to the dentist regularly, despite the hassle. Or perhas she has no idea but he pits the kids all on short recalls so she has to bring them back?

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 10 Aug 2018, 01:36 
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Alison H wrote:
It's quite an interesting ethical dilemma, actually :lol: :lol: .

I think it's very kind of Joey to give Richenda some spending money - but I can see that parents might feel awkward about it, and feel that they were then obliged to reciprocate, although in this case it's unlikely that Prof Fry will ever find out.


Maybe it's a cultural thing? My parents are very Chinese so saving face is a massive deal with them and I was given very strict guidelines on what I could or could not accept as gifts when I was a child. An ice cream is OK. An entire lunch is not.

If I told my mother that my friend's mother had given me money for an outing I would have had to return it. The assumption I was given was that my parents give me enough pocket money and I was only ever allowed to ask my parents for more money.

If I had been in Richenda's position I would have been taught to thank Joey politely but explain my parents would not allow me to accept.

Alison H wrote:
So is it OK that Richenda gets to have a nice time after all? I think Prof Fry has handled it all very badly and that it's very nice of Joey to see that Richenda does enjoy herself, but it means that the instructions given by Richenda's dad are being overridden.

If Jo had said that Mike wasn't to have any treats because of his bad behaviour, and then she found out that the Emburys' tutor had taken him and the Embury boys out to (say) a funfair and bought them a load of cakes and ice cream, would she have been OK with that?


I think the school explains to Pro Fry that what he originally suggest i.e. she stay at the school with work to do, is impossible. There is noone to take care of her and the teachers don't have the time to set extra work or to mark it afterwards. And fair enough.

As for whether Joey should have given Ricki a fun time? Well ... it's pretty obvious Pro Fry is continuing to punish her for something she did long before she reached the school. The school is only responsible for her behaviour/punishment AFTER she arrives.

But it does jar with the usual method the school takes which is to go with what the parents want. So basically the school is deciding which of the parent's demands/requests are reasonable and which are not.

As for Mike, I agree with whoever it was that said any punishment would be up to Joey to enforce. Or the tutor/Winnie Embury calls her and asks if it's OK for Mike to go to the fair and give the responsibility back to Joey to decide.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Chalet School and Richenda
PostPosted: 10 Aug 2018, 08:08 
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This has just reminded me when I was about 9, and went out with a friend and her mum for the day, and we went into WH Smith and the mum insisted on buying me a book - Jo of the Chalet School, no less! It was really embarrassing: the parents were going through a very bitter divorce, and were using the kids as pawns against each other, and trying to impress the kids' friends was part of it. Very awkward position to be in. I was delighted to have the book, but I did feel bad because other people's parents randomly buying presents for you like that just wasn't the done thing! She wouldn't take no for an answer :lol: .

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