The Little Girl At The Window | Hamro Patro

ब्लग - साहित्य / बाल साहित्य

The little girl at the window

   Eshita Lal - Feb 02 2023

This book is an autobiographical memorial to the writer herself. It was written by Tetsuko Kuroyanagi. This book was originally published in 1981 and became an instant bestseller in Japan. This book was actually written by the writer to motivate children who do not like going to school, so she chose to write her own life story. It all started as articles and later as a book, but who knew this book would become the best-selling book in "Japan History"? It's about a girl named Totto-chan who was expelled from her school for disrupting the class and being too talkative. She went to a new school, and it changed everything.

This story starts with a girl named Totto-Chan. She used to be a very talkative girl and was always disturbing her class. She used to be told by the teachers to stay quiet, which made Totto-chan feel very bored; that is why she used to look out of the window of the classroom. Her teacher used to even scold her for that, as she used to not pay any attention to the teachers. She was soon expelled from school. When Totto-chan’s mother got to know that her daughter had been expelled, she knew that she needed to find a school where freedom of expression was allowed. So, she took her to the school named Tomoe Gakuen. She met the founder, Mr. Kobayashi. Totto-chan easily befriended him. Totto-chan was taken aback when she arrived at her new school and discovered that there were no ordinary classrooms like at her previous school but rather railroad cars. They were allowed to choose any subject they liked. She even made some new friends. She became best friends with a boy who had polio, but it did not matter to Totto-chan. As he had polio, he could not climb up the tree houses that were in the school for every student, but Totto-chan would help him climb up in the tree house. They had afternoon walks almost every day at school, where they would learn about nature, the environment, and the history of the region. Totto chan used to have a lot of fun at her new school.They had a sports week, and everyone always enjoyed it. But one day at the assembly, Mr. Kobayashi came up to the stage and, with a heavy heart, he said that Yasuaki-chan (Totto-chan’s best friend) had passed away. Everyone was very sad. They all went to his funeral, and when Yasuaki-chan’s mother saw Totto-chan, she came to her and cried, saying he would always talk about Totto-chan. Totto-chan cried near his coffin. Totto-chan promised that one day she would see him, and somewhere in life, they would meet again. When Totto-chan was leaving, she was sure she saw Yasuaki-chan, but she did not say anything and cried a lot. If that was not enough, when she went home from school, her pet dog was missing. She cried a lot and searched a lot but did not find her dog. Her mother told her to find him, but Totto-chan knew one thing for certain: her dog would never return. This all happened during World War II. Now everything she most adored was gone, and still the only school she loved the most, Tomoe Gakuen, was bombed during the war. Totto-chan watched all of this from her window, remembering everything that had happened to her.

Critical Interpretations
Well, personally, I really loved this book; it was very nicely written. And to say that a little girl loses almost everything she adored and loved the most is an understatement. Her memories, which she should have been very happy to remember, turned out to be the most hurtful thing about them. I liked the idea of Mr. Kobayashi creating a school where students can freely express anything they enjoy while studying, creating an environment where all kinds of children can study and have the same respect, fun, and education. Children who suffered from such diseases were also treated the same way every other child was. And this is what should be happening. I also like the idea of doing a daily afternoon walk with the children where they can breathe fresh air after all classes and still learn many interesting things. I really did not find anything that I did not like about this story.

I honestly recommend that all of you read this book. I personally liked this book a lot. This book was actually written by the writer to motivate children who do not like going to school, so she chose to write her own life story. It all started as articles and later as a book, but who knew this book would become the best selling book in "Japan History?" After reading this book, you will have many questions and may be disappointed with the ending because it is very sad. But still, once we start reading this book, we will feel attached to it. This book was very well written. All the characters were very well described. People who think that true friendship does not exist in this world anymore may change their minds after reading this book. Again, at last, I would like to say that I really recommend this book to all of you.

Eshita Lal
Grade: VII ‘Pomari’
Author: Tetsuko Kuroyanagi
Genre: Autobiography, children’s literature, fictional autobiography

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Hamro Patro is one of the first Nepali app to include Nepali Patro, launched in 2010. We started with a Nepali Calendar mobile app to help Nepalese living abroad stay in touch with Nepalese festivals and important dates in Nepali calendar year. Later on, to cater to the people who couldn’t type in Nepali using fonts like Preeti, Ganesh and even Nepali Unicode, we built nepali mobile keyboard called Hamro Nepali keyboard.