Why can't I be good cover

Why can't I be good?


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This short booklet for children is part of a series designed to teach children about a range of health conditions common to many looked after children.

Hanna really wanted to be good. Every morning she promised herself that she would be good all day. But somehow it never worked out that way. By the time she is seven Hanna is very badly behaved, but she wants to change. She is fed up with people telling her off and she wants to show her parents that she is glad they have adopted her. So Hanna makes a plan: she will try very hard to be good one day at a time in one way at a time.

This story about emotional and behavioural difficulties will be helpful for any child aged seven to 11 whose behaviour frequently gets them into trouble, or who knows someone who can’t be good.

Who is this book for?

Any child aged seven to 11 whose behaviour frequently gets them into trouble, or who knows someone who can’t be good. The booklet is designed for a child to read with a parent, carer or worker available to talk through it with them and answer possible questions.

What you will find in this book

This short story introduces Hanna and explores her early life as she is fostered, and then adopted, when her mother is unable to look after her. When she decides, aged seven, to try and be good, we follow her efforts as she takes this one imaginative step at a time.

The book includes a question and answer section which covers a wide range of queries and concerns about behaviour problems, and provides practical information and advice in a straightforward and child-friendly style.


Hedi Argent is an independent adoption consultant, trainer and freelance writer. She has written and edited many books for CoramBAAF including Adopting a brother or sisterDealing with disruption and a guide for children about kinship care, Kinship care: what it is and what it means.


Rachel Fuller specialises in children’s books, developing and illustrating novelty packages as well as young fiction and educational materials. She has also illustrated A safe place for Rufus, Elfa and the box of memories and Spark learns to fly.





There is lots of good repetition in the story as Hannah goes through her learning week, and there are little coloured pictures scattered throughout. A set of questions and answers will help discussions with children who have behaviour problems, and certainly the approach of trying to solve one problem at a time is a good one. If, like Hannah, a child wants to be better, to be loved and not to behave badly, her story will ring a bell.