Identical twins Ruby and Garnet are inseparable. They do everything together and go everywhere together. They love being twins, and since the death of their mother, they have been closer than ever, safe in their little world. But when Dad finds a new girlfriend, everything in the twins’ lives is turned upside down–new home, new school, new everything. And gradually, being twins isn’t quite the same anymore.
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- The story is told from the point of view of both girls. How is this shown in the book? How do we know which character is narrating?
- Could the children think of two of their own characters and write a story with each person taking a turn to narrate? Could they work with a friend and write a story with each child telling a part of the story?
- Ruby and Garnet have to move away from their gran, their school and their home to live in a new place. Write a letter to their old school friends to describe how they feel when they arrive at their new house.
- The girls have their own special language using made-up words and signs. Could you make up your own new words and signs to communicate with others?
- Ruby and Garnet sometimes describe the same thing in completely different ways, depending upon how they feel about them. Could you write about the same person / place / thing from two different points of view?
- Ruby writes a letter to the headteacher of a new school asking if they can go there in September. Could you write a reply from the headteacher’s point of view?
- Read the headteacher’s letter to Mr. Barker about the girls’ application and identify any unknown words and phrases. What does the headteacher think about each of the girls?
- Write a reply to Garnet’s letter (from Ruby’s point of view) at the end of the book.
- Read the Play Edition of the book and use it as a starting point for work on play scripts. Could the children perform the play?
- Write a description of Ruby from Garnet’s point of view (and vice versa).
- Watch the film version of the book. How does it compare to the book? Which do you prefer?
- The Jacqueline Wilson website has lots of information about her and the books that she has written. This could be used to do research for a biography.
- Watch this video in which the author shares some writing tips. Can you use them in your own writing?
- Some of the illustrations in the book are symmetrical. Could you make a new book cover / illustration which is completely symmetrical?
- The girls sometimes try mirror writing. Try this in the classroom and use it as a starting point for work on light and reflection.
- Ruby and Garnet’s gran used to make all of their clothes. Could you design some new ones for them?
- Discuss what it would be like to be a twin. What would the children like / dislike about it? If there are twins in the class, they could share their own experiences, if they are happy to.
- Ruby has lots of confidence, but Garnet is quite shy. Discuss what these concepts mean and how they can sometimes affect the choices that we make.
- Ruby doesn’t like to cry. Use this as a starting point for discussions about why people do cry. How does it affect them? How can others help those who are crying?
- Ruby’s ambition is to be an actress. What are ambitions?