Spiders in a row
Jane McGee

Jane McGee – My story

An Arachnophobia Workshop at Dudley Zoo was the inspiration for my stories about spiders. I was teaching the Psychology of phobias and I wanted students to see an example of how phobias can be treated in a real-world setting.

I attended the event with a group of my sixth form students and we discovered that one of the most common phobias in Western cultures is fear of spiders. The prominence of spider phobia may well be the result of the negative portrayal of spiders in a variety of media, including popular children’s stories and modern horror and thriller films such as the US movie Arachnophobia. I believe that it is time that this changed.

By writing these stories for 4-7 year olds, I hope it will help children develop a more positive view of spiders and inspire an interest in nature.  

Girl with spider in a jar
Lady with boy handling spider
Girl with Cobweb Capers pictures

Some other things about me!

If I could keep any animal as a pet, I would choose a lemur. In fact, I’ve adopted a ring-tailed lemur at Dudley Zoo called Frank.

If I had to eat one type of food for the rest of my life, it would have to be porridge with banana and a sprinkling of cinnamon.

I would love to meet David Attenborough and the author Julia Donaldson. I hope they would both enjoy Cobweb Capers.

Art was my favourite subject at school. The most stunning painting I have ever seen is Van Gogh’s ‘Sunflowers’ in Amsterdam.

One thing I really wish I’d learned before I left school is another language. I just didn’t see the importance of it at school.

When I was growing up, my parents made me sit at the table until I had eaten all of my vegetables. I love all vegetables now.