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A Bad Day for Jayden

Written by Tony Bradman

Illustrated by Tania Rex

Key Stage 2 Family / Home Stories Personal Social Health Economic (PSHE)

LoveReading View on A Bad Day for Jayden

A soul-warming story about the magic of a good teacher who turns around a pupil’s bad day, with the promise of a brighter future

Interest Age 8+ Reading Age 8

Tony Bradman’s gripping novella about a (bad) day in the life of a boy caring for his mum is truly touching, and especially great for reluctant readers – the concise, considered storytelling holds attention, and the short chapters are perfect for encouraging readers to keep going, or take a break, as they require.


Jayden’s Mum hasn’t been herself since losing her job at the supermarket. “Maybe Mum would do the washing today,” he wonders before school one morning. “They really needed some shopping as well – the fridge was almost empty.”  With Mum still in bed, Jayden gets little sister Madison ready for school, all the while worrying about what they’ll do when there’s no money at all, what they’ll eat for dinner now the cupboards are bare. Things get even worse at school when his best friend tells him to “go away...We’re not friends anymore.” 


Meanwhile, Jayden’s new supply teacher isn’t having a good day either: “She’d wanted to teach kids, but she had also wanted to make a difference to their lives. Yet things had changed, and over the last few years she had seemed to spend all her time filling out forms... And that made her feel cross and sad.” And now she’s here in Jayden’s school feeling lost, wondering whether she should be a teacher at all. Seeing Jayden look so sad pains her heart and then, when his sadness turns to anger and erupts like an angry volcano, Miss Wilson helps him see light at the end of his dark tunnel.

Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+

Joanne Owen

More About This Book

Barrington Stoke is the foremost publisher of dyslexia friendly books and those for reluctant readers.  Here on Lovereading4kids we are constantly selecting new titles and refreshing our special dyslexia friendly category.

Click here to view our current selection which is broken down by age range.

A Bad Day for Jayden Synopsis

Mum won't get out of bed. His best friend has dumped him. And school work is just too difficult. Jayden wants to do the right thing - but how can he when it feels like the world is conspiring against him? Everything is going wrong, and when a supply teacher turns up to take his class, Jayden's sure things will keep on getting worse. But Mrs Wilson is not quite the teacher Jayden expected ... can she help turn his bad day around?

A touching and sensitively told story of life as a young carer from beloved author Tony Bradman.

Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 8+

Book Information

ISBN: 9781781129012
Publication date: 12th March 2020
Author: Tony Bradman
Illustrator: Tania Rex
Publisher: Barrington Stoke Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 64 pages
Year Groups: Key Stage 2
Topics: Family / Home Stories, Family Issues, Personal Social Health Economic

About Tony Bradman

Tony Bradman was born in 1954 (not during the Jurassic era, as his children have been known to claim). He went to school in London, and then Cambridge University. After university he worked in the music press, then became Deputy Editor of Parents magazine, and began reviewing children’s books. He had his first book for children published in 1985 and became a full-time author in 1987. He is a hugely prolific author with a particular passion for bringing history to life for young people. He is a regular at all the major literary festivals, reviews for The Guardian and is the ...

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