Roald Dahl and the Bad Report Card Factory

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By Jason Boog

This week Penguin imprint Puffin released a new Roald Dahl collection that includes a secret ending to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, a fudge recipe, and excerpts from the author’s terrible report cards. Among his collection of bad grades, one teacher called the aspiring writer “consistently idle.”

According to The Missing Golden Ticket and Other Splendiferous Secrets, Dahl’s teacher described the would-be writer in 1931: “A persistent muddler. Vocabulary negligible, sentences malconstructed. He reminds me of a camel.” In 1932, another teacher added more criticism: “This boy is an indolent and illiterate member of the class.”

Penguin has dubbed September Roald Dahl Month, featuring a reading marathon in the writer’s honor. Meet Dahl in the video embedded above, where the author explained witches in a strange television special.