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Flipping Fantastic

Synopsis 

“Flipping Fantastic‟ by Jane Langford is a story about twin brothers and their mother. Tristan is an outstanding, brilliant and a capable boy but James is shy, nervous and lacks confidence. Both of them are about to finish their primary education at Peter Hill Primary soon and plan to begin their new school term in two different schools. Their mother decides to enroll James in Highfields and Tristan who is physically challenged and wheelchair bound, in a special school (Chesterlea Grange). Both brothers are confused over the thought of being separated as they have never been apart from each other. Since they rely on each other, the twins are concerned about how they are going to cope in their new school environment. The mother wants the twins to be independent. She is confident that Tristan would be able to cope well at Chesterlea Grange. However, she worries about James and wonders how he is going to manage all alone at Highfields. Tristan changes his mind about Chesterlea Grange, in order to be with James. Besides that, the school is far away from home and he would only be able to see James once a week. On the other hand, James manages to persuade him by reminding him of all the facilities and activities in his new school that Tristan dreamt of. Knowing James cannot cope himself alone, Tristan calls on their friend Kiara Jones to help James in Highfields.  The twins at last realise that they have made the right decision and their new school environment is flipping fantastic.

              

 
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Posted by on March 17, 2011 in Flipping Fantastic

 

Characters

   

    Tristan                                                                     

Tristan is the twin who has a physical disability. He moves around in a wheelchair and cannot walk or move his arms easily. He is also unable to dress himself or play football. Tristan is good in Maths and computers. He is also good in drama and acts very well as Tom Sawyer in the year-end school play. Although Tristan cannot play games, he is good at swimming.

James

James has no physical disability. He is good in sports and plays football. James is shyer and less confidence than Tristan. He is also more nervous and very worried about going to new school without Tristan. This is mainly because he is very dependent on Tristan. 

  

Mum:

She is the mother of Tristan and James. She is determined to send her sons to different schools so that they would be independent and confident about their own abilities.

Kiara Jones

 Kiara plays football and Tristan arranges for her to be James “special friend” at Highfields to help him adapt to his new school. Both James and Tristan like her very much.

                                                                     

 
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Posted by on March 16, 2011 in Flipping Fantastic

 

Setting

Peter Hill Primary:

Tristan and James are finishing their final year in this primary school.  They perform in a play entitled “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” which is the last activity in the school. Chesterlea Grange:

This is a residential school for students of special needs situated far away from Tristan’s home. Tristan looks forward to be enrolled in this special school which has all the facilities that he has dreamt of such as a drama studio, games room, swimming pool and a paddock. The school also has sports activities such as basketball tournament, archery contest, wheelchair games and so on.

Highfields:

This is the school that James is going to be enrolled in when the new school term begins.  At the end of the story, James feels excited about his new school as most of his schoolmates are there including Kiara Jones.

                                                             

 
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Posted by on March 15, 2011 in Flipping Fantastic

 

Themes

Fear of the unknown:

James dreads being alone in High fields without the help of Tristan. Although Tristan feels excited about his new school, at times he feels confused at being alone and far away from home and his brother in the new school.

Motherly pride:

Mum takes pride in her boys’ ability.  She admires James’s courage to perform on stage despite being an introvert and appreciates Tristan’s great performance. As “Tom Sawyer” in the school play.

Other themes/ sub-themes: a caring society, being independent, brotherly love.

 

 

                                                                   

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2011 in Flipping Fantastic

 

Literary Devices

Point of View:

This story is written from the first person point of view. The pronoun “I” is used. We see the events from three perspectives; namely that of Tristan, James and Mum. We can experience their thoughts and feelings.

Tone:

The tone is generally sincere, serious and reflective. At times it is emotional. Diction (the choice of words used in the story)

serious -…James, on the other hand, has always been so nervous. I’ve been really worried about him…

reflective– Just because we’re twins doesn’t mean we have to be good at the same things. I accept that.

emotional – Talk about pride! Tonight I thought I was going to burst with it! 

simple vocabulary; short sentences; lots of exclamation marks (!) to express emotions

use of contractions (e.g. he’s; it’s, etc) to show a conversational style

Simile

The story has several similes e.g.

I feel like a tyre that has burst ; as freely as a freshly oiled cog, etc.   

 Journal entries/reflections

3 different styles to express the thoughts and feelings of the 3 characters.

Contrast

Contrast of writing styles. E.g. Tristan’s thoughts are in a box; James’s thoughts appear to be on lined paper while mum’s thoughts are in italics.

Contrast of opinions and characters Tristan loves drama while James loathes it. Slang /colloquial expressions e.g. .. the new school is really cool ; collywobbles; mate; flipping; I’ve really blown it! 

(to give it afresh modern feel)  

Rhetorical questions                        

Questions that require no answer   

.  e.g. How can I tell Mum?

                                                                                                   Click next to go to the exercises!

                                                                   

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2011 in Flipping Fantastic

 
 
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