So, my husband is out of town for the second week. I’m feeling bogged down by schoolwork. All three kids are needy. All at the same time. It’s enough to make me lose it. And tonight I did. After loads of frustrating and annoying misbehavior (and my overtired hypersensitivity to it) I had had it. As an early bedtime approached, I barked, “Get your books and sit on the couch. I’m tired and ready for bed.” (note the time of this post; obviously, I wasn’t going to bed anytime soon.) What are the chances…they both brought me wordless books. Are you kidding me? David Wiesner’s Freefall and Beatrice Rodriguez’s The Chicken Thief. Okay, let’s get this straight. I love wordless picture books, but I have to be in a pretty chipper and fun mood to really do them justice. Tonight was not the night. I opened the first book and we three sat in silence. “Mom. Read.” “Why do I have to read? There aren’t any words. Why don’t you guys tell the story? Look at the pictures.” (The 3 year old about Weisner) – “Look at the boy’s pillow! It’s turning into the clouds! And…what do you think is going to happen next? Oh, look, chess!” After the first couple pages, the 5 year old took over. I couldn’t believe how much they sounded like me reading. Even more amazing that they got along (major accomplishment) and collaborated in their storytelling. They used predictions, pictures, prior knowledge (we did just read this last night). They used observations that I had made, as well as their own that had not come up when I was “reading” it the night before. I loved that they were working harder at it this time.
Their version of The Chicken Thief was hilarious. I could not help but laugh. And just like that, I was better. I think they’ll be “reading” more often.