I recently came across a children’s book that pulled my mind in many different directions. The book is called There and is written by Marie-Louise Fitzpatric. I immediately went to Amazon to buy this book and when I received it, got lost in the beautiful illustrations and deep into my own thought. This is definitely a book that I recommend as an abstract read aloud to your children or to the kids in your classroom. The story goes a bit like this.
A little girl is ready to leave town and wander over green hills and valleys. She is going There, which brings up a lot of questions. What will she find? Made concrete through the idea of travel, There serves as a metaphor for growing up as the girl wonders about a variety of concepts (time, size, knowledge, childhood pleasures, struggles she may encounter). Unsure of whether to continue, she considers an imaginative haze of artful and luminous landscapes that portray her thoughts (Will she still be allowed to be silly? Will she learn to count the stars and fix broken things?) and uncertainties (What if there are dragons?) She knows how to handle dragons (Kirkus Reviews 2009)
The other day, I noticed one of our students getting lost in his thoughts while reading a book that I brought in. It was a magical book about dolphins and a Native American girl. Children’s literature is so meaningful to children whether they know it or not. It provides another way for our students to make connections to the world and can be linked to experiences that they may have had or will have in the future.
Here is a quote that I love about reading and literature:
“All literature, and literacy, is born from the human need to tell stories, to tell stories about one self or about others, to tell stories about the world to better understand our existence, the others and the universe we live in.” ~Denise von Stockar