It seems obvious and inevitable that I would print out a copy of JITTERBUG and go read it in Pippa's preschool classrom. The reality is, an unbelievable amount of work went into accomplishing this seemingly super-simple feat! 26 pages with images to inspire, paired with poems with punch, printed and bound... this did not "just happen"! But today... it did... and the kids' reactions were a) awesome and b) useful. A few takeaways from this morning:
Kids are so visual! The words in a picture book are so NOT the maker-or-breaker; it's pictures first and foremost, with the words serving to point out the picturesque sights along the way (and, crucially, not getting in the way). For the first read-through at least, the words seemed mostly to just flow over the kids while they were looking at the pictures. In-depth appreciations of the subtleties of the language; that's gotta wait (maybe years!)
Say the word "underwear". Say it six times, if possible! Or, "underpants". "Undies" works too. Underwear is funny, when you're four!
They loved U is for Unicorn. This was good to know, as some very well-intentioned adults found my inclusion of Unicorn, uninspired; too cliché. Kids and other magical thinkers indicate otherwise. I'm glad UNICORN survived the endless rounds of edits.
Next week I'll read the book to two more classrooms full of kids. Looking forward to letting the pictures do the talking; the poems do the pointing; and the kids do all the "teaching"!