Thursday, June 14, 2012

Read with Me! Book 7 - Swimmy

Swimmy by Leo Lionni

This story may have been a little too advanced for my two and half year old. In the beginning of the story, Swimmy loses his whole family to a hungry tuna fish. "Only Swimmy escaped." Yeah, I don't think she understood that concept. Then, I modified the next page. I didn't want to go from his family being eaten to the fact that he was lonely, scared and sad. 

But Swimmy found beautiful things in the sea that made him feel better. And here again we encountered some concepts that were beyond her (and my) vocabulary level. I actually looked up "medusa jellyfish" to find out exactly what it was. Then there was the description of a lobster who is "like a water-moving machine" whatever that is! I enjoyed the nuance of the fishing line, but it went right over my daughter's head. As a matter of fact, most of the story was over her head. At the end of the story he convinced another group of fish to swim very close together and to move like a giant fish to scare away any fish that would want to eat them. Even with multiple explanations and repetitions of the fact that now they are not scared, she was stuck on the fact that the little fish are afraid of the big fish. Then the story ends. That's it. (It was quite abrupt, like the end of this blog entry!)

But while you are reading there are lots of language concepts that can be addressed - 

Descriptions: black as a mussel shell, swift, fierce and very hungry (tuna), deep wet world, wonderful creatures, marvel to marvel, pulled by an invisible thread, sugar-candy rocks and like pink palm trees.

Concepts: together/apart, feelings (fear, loneliness, bravery), teamwork, 

Synonyms: scared/afraid, midday/noon, fast/quick, invisible/unseen, strange/odd, sway/wave, little/small, big/large,  close/near

How did your child respond to the story?

Check out my pinterest page for a few other activities that go along with Swimmy!

If you need the book, I have an Amazon link below or go check it out at your local library!

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