Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Why yes your four-year-old boy should be wearing two big diamond-like earrings

I volunteered today for the first time at an early childhood reading program. Groups of four and five-year-old kids come [jump, run, skip] into the library, sing the library song, count the number of kids and and of adults in the room ("Fortyteen"), Pat pat pat On the back back back For a Job Well Done UH-HUH! then we volunteers read to them for 15 minutes. We tie all their shoelaces, then they leave and another batch comes in.

I read "Stellaluna" to one of my groups, even though I didn't think a story about a baby bat losing her mother to an owl attack and falling, falling, falling until she hit a tree and couldn't hold on all night and then had to go against her true nature because she was an orphan and couldn't be picky was the best choice for small children, but these kids wanted it. Oh yes, they'd read it before. Well OK.


Then I had a kid all by himself. When I held out my hand and introduced myself, he slapped it instead of shaking it. Solid.

This is part of our conversation:

Kid: I have an elephant.

Me: You do?

Kid: Uh-huh.

Me: What's his name?

Kid: Whispers. I mean, Dumbo. His name is Dumbo.

Me: What does Dumbo eat?

Kid: Water.

Me: Water?

Kid: And peanuts.

Me: No chocolate chip cookies?

Kid [pointing at picture of Stellaluna]: I can hang by my feet!

Me: You can?

Kid: Uh huh!

Me: Where?

Kid: On my elephant.

Me: On your elephant?

Kid: Yeah. I live at the circus.

Me: Wow! Where do you sleep?

Kid: On my elephant.

Me: On your elephant?

Kid: Yeah. On his trunk.

Me: What do you eat?

Kid: Carrots. Bananas. Fruits.


Anonymous said...

You're onto something....so many kids can not read!!! If we can catch them early on and help them develop a love for reading, there is hope! Keep investing in the future...White-Chocolate

Richard in NY said...

He's lying about what he eats.

Anonymous Mother said...

He might not be totally honest about where he sleeps either... ;~)

Melissa said...

Don't you love how a four-year-old thinks? I've got one, and the direction of the conversations is pretty hilarious.

Very cool volunteer gig :)