As I came into one of my classes today, the students all gathered around me, waving red pamphlets and telling me we have to go outside! I didn’t know what was going on until I realized there was a demonstration going on, right outside the building, visible from the classroom window. My students tried to convince me that they were really interested in that demonstration and wanted to go there, which I doubted since they obviously preferred this to a lesson. Eventually we went outside to see what it was all about.
My daughter (almost 3) loves reading books. I (almost 34) love reading books. There might be a connection. But because I’m me, I can’t help but look closer at the books she reads. Children’s books are full of ideas what kids are supposed to think and they are also full of stereotypes. If you want to read books with your kids and care about what they take away from it, you have to look very close and you have to think what you tell them or if some books need extra explanation. I’ve collected some examples, negative and positive ones, mainly from non-fiction books and since my daughter never gets tired of getting new books from the library, this will probably not the last time I’m doing this (and I’m sorry for some of the bad quality of the photos, I’m not a professional book page photographer). The title of this series refers again to J. Zornado’s incredible and mind-changing book Inventing the Child, in which he takes a look at children’s literature and shows the horrible things we read to our kids for decades.