Class 4C are disgusted. They know the teachers think they’re stupid but that’s not an excuse to give them flour babies! Of all the projects they could have got for the school science fair (exploding custard tins, maggot farm, soap factory) how did they end up with flour babies?
Well, that might have something to do with Simon Martin. He persuades them that if they can look after their little bags of flour, as if they are actual babies, for the three weeks of the project, they will be rewarded with a massive flour fight once the experiment is over.
But has Simon got the wrong end of the stick?
In a classic story which is funny, touching and insightful, the boys in 4C learn much more than they had expected from the flour babies project.
Many decide that parenthood is too awful to contemplate; others discover feelings of gratitude towards their own parents; one takes the opportunity to develop his entrepreneurial spirit. But Simon, who has always felt deprived because his mum is a single parent, learns the most valuable lesson: that the quality of parenting is so much more important than the quantity of parents.