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I have a date with 20 first graders for the next couple of weeks discussing process. Yesterday was my first gig and it went pretty well.

My sister self-publishes a book each year on E's annual trip to Nahant. It's primarily of interest to the family and we send it to the classroom when she's 'Star of the Week.' So I brought in the sister's very heavy and very learned books and contact sheets of all the photos she took for one of the 'Nahant' books and then 4x5's of the photos. Passed them all around. Showed a pie chart that only 1/4 of the photos made it into the book. That they were out of order, mixed up to create the story she wanted. That she doesn't know what the story will be, though there's usually a photo of our arrival. That she doesn't write any words until she has the photos picked. They've been learning about 'editing' though mostly copy-editing.

And I told them that each of us would pick different photos and tell a different story. I had pulled out one photo where E was sitting on a rock just like the statue of The Little Mermaid in Copenhagen. My sister didn't use that photo. I told them that this was the photo that spoke to me and I would have written an entire story around it. Showed them photos of the real statue, told them about the HCA, original, version of the story. Told them my sister knows that statue and story just as well as I do, but didn't use the photo because it didn't fit her story as she wanted to tell it.

Next week it's show and tell with props for the inspiration for one of my own stories.

Frog Out



( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 3rd, 2007 02:57 pm (UTC)
This kind of lesson might change their lives. I mean, even a lot of adults don't realize that a story creates a reality, not vice versa. These children now have a powerful tool to analyze their surroundings with -- all that stuff on TV and in books is not just make believe, it could be different make believe.
May. 4th, 2007 01:05 pm (UTC)
So true! Alternate make-believes. I even told them about the ending to the other Little Mermaid story and why it was told that way. Can't wait to do my show and tell next week.

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )