5th Aug 2020 4:01:47 PM

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Children of Fire Useful Reading / Videos

The books and videos below will help provide you with more information. We have placed them into general categories. The list will be updated as more books are found.

Rebuilding people

Jewgenij Sewerin, der Mann, der sein Gesicht verlor by Kurt Blatter. ISBN 3-7655-5859-1.
Published in 1999 by Brunnen in Basel, Switzerland.

This book is in German. It tells the tale of a Russian forester whose central face was bitten off by a bear and how remarkably talented and kind Swiss surgeons found him and rebuilt him.

Tolerance of disfigurement

Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy. ISBN 0-06-097673-X
Published by Harper Perennial (part of Harper Collins).

At age 9, Lucy was diagnosed with a potentially terminal cancer. When she returned to school with a third of her jaw removed, she faced the cruel taunts of classmates. In this candid memoir, she tells her story of great suffering and remarkable strength without sentimentality and with considerable wit. I think every 12 year old boy in whatever country should have this as a set book at school.

Age 14 by Geert Spillebeen. ISBN 90-317-1582-4
Published by Averbode in The Netherlands.

The book is in Dutch and I hope it will be translated one day as it sounds as if it would be at least as powerful as Autobiography of a Face. It concerns a boy John Condon whose face was terribly scarred by a mustard gas explosion. He became a social outcast, a leper and died in Ireland at age 14. The man who invented the bomb was feted but his victim was just a name carved on a tombstone - till now.

Changing Faces by James Partridge. ISBN 1-900928-12-4
Published in 1994 by Changing Faces, 1 Junction Mews, London W2 1PN.

At the age of 18 James lost his face in a car fire. The book recounts how he came to terms with his facial disfigurement.

Multiple disabilty and visual impairment.

Early Childhood Education by T Bruce (2nd edition)
Published in 1999 by Hodder and Stoughton London.

Blindness and Psychological Development in Young Children by V Lewis & GM Collis. ISBN 1-85433-234-7.
Published in 1997 by British Psychological Society, Leicester. Plymbridge Distributors Ltd, Estover, Plymouth, PL6 7PZ UK.

Are You Blind? The education of developmentally threatened children. by L Nielsen.
Published in 1990 by SIKON, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Also by Nielsen "Space and Self" and PhD thesis Aarborg University, "Spatial Relations in congenitally blind infants" and a new video - "Perceptualising Aids".

The First Relationship: Infant and mother by DN Stern.
Published in 1977 by Cambridge, Harvard University Press.
Also by Stern: The interpersonal world of the infant: A view from psychoanalysis and developmental psychology published by New York, Basic Books(1985). Diary of a Baby pubilshed by New York, Basic Books (1990).


Goldschmied E. Infants at work. Booksales, National Children's Bureau, 8 Wakley St, London EC1V 7QE, United Kingdom.

Goldschmied E and Hughes A. Heuristic Play with Objects. Booksales, National Children's Bureau, 8 Wakley St, London EC1V 7QE, United Kingdom.

Porter J & Miller O. There's Never an End to Learning (1998) RNIB 224 Great Portland St London W1N 6AA, United Kingdom. ISBN 1 85878 141 8

Lee M and Macwilliam L. Movement Gesture and Sign (1996) Moray House Institute of Education, Educational Television, Holyrood Rd, Edinburgh EH8 8AQ, United Kingdom.


Resonating platform, an idea by Dr Lilli Nielsen . A thin plywood plynth raised off the ground, it amplifies the sounds of the children's own movements. The bottom drawer of an old-fashioned chest of drawers may be ideal. Experiment, improvise.

Similarly "The Little Room" a metre cube for hanging playthings in. Use hard materials that echo the sounds of the child's contact with the objects - a cardboard crate only muffles the sounds and the ventilation is poor - avoid plastic, hang metal chains, wood, straw, kitchen utensils, important items from the child's daily routine. The kneehole of a desk is a good space. If there aren't 15 items, there isn't enough for the child to do! Oh, and NEVER touch a blind child's hands - while they are trying to use them to feel and explore.

This material is Copyright The Dorah Mokoena Charitable Trust and/or Children of Fire , 1998-2020.
Distribution or re-transmission of this material, excluding the Schools' Guide, is expressly forbidden without prior permission of the Trust.
For further information, email firechildren@icon.co.za