Little People Big Dreams - Opening Up A Discussion
Recently, my 6yo has been really getting into this series of books. He loves the fact they're about real people and he is fascinated by their lives. We've read about L.M. Montgomery, Ella Fitzgerald and Stephen Hawking, amongst many others. They're incredibly accessible and have prompted not only a whole series of discussions, but also prompted further research into the lives of the people we've looked at, as he inevitably wants to know what happens after the book ends. One of the first ones he read was Martin Luther King Jr, so it seemed appropriate to share this blog post today.
We've talked about racism, homophobia, why novel reading was once considered dangerous, environmentalism, animal rights and slavery as well as listened to music whilst looking out for the distinctive style of the singer. He's learned new words and considered how his experiences of life are not necessarily the same as everyone else's. Yes, it has prompted some uncomfortable questions - the answers to which I'm not sure he's quite ready for. I had to be very careful when we read the one on Anne Frank because at six, I wouldn't expect him to be able to comprehend the enormity of the Holocaust, nor would I want him to be able to. However, I hope that the groundwork has been laid to develop those discussions further as he gets older and more mature.
The books themselves are beautifully written and presented and they look very attractive on the shelf, which is always a bonus for me. However, the best part is that they make him want to read. He's asked for several of them on his kindle so he can read in the car when it gets dark and as far as I'm concerned, that's reason enough to buy more of them!
The other bonus of course, is that in reading some of the series, he is also being introduced to some of my favourite authors. He was even excited, when we read the one about Michelle Obama, to discover I'd read her proper autobiography. Consequently, I'm keeping everything crossed that as he gets older he will want to read the books these people have written and thus, will discover whole new worlds of wonder!