I am a big proponent of literature-based language intervention for children with language-learning disabilities. I’ll often choose a text and have kids study it for several weeks, using the text for semantic development, syntax practice, and narrative retelling.
Sometimes I’ll try to find a few different versions of the same story, such as Chicken Little or The Gingerbread Boy so we can compare and contrast, or I’ll read the story to the kids during one session and maybe play an audio recording of someone reading it in another session.
The website Storyline Online is a useful resource (though I caution you that I don’t think some of the stories are that great) for this. For example, I have a nice unit on A Bad Case of Stripesm and I always play the Storyline Online version of Sean Astin reading it because he does such an enjoyable presentation.
So the other day a speech session finished up a bit early and I asked the kids if they wanted to preview a new story on Storyline Online with me. I wasn’t familiar with the book The Tooth so I said we’d watch it together and decide if it was a story we’d like to study. File this one under Always Preview the Book Before You Watch It With The Kids, Mrs. Thiry. *sigh*
I clicked it on to watch Annette Bening read the story. You simply must watch the video – go on, it isn’t long, but the rest of my comments won’t really be as meaningful if you don’t actually see what I’m talking about. Now, Annette Bening is quite typical of Hollywood elites – very liberal, very politically active, a sort of social-justicier-than-thou demeanor – but I would not have thought it possible for anyone to make a children’s story this unenjoyable to hear:
After the video ended, the two children in the room looked downcast – not their usual cheery faces.
“Well.” I said as brightly as I could. “Well. Perhaps not that story then. Perhaps a nice Jan Brett book about Easter bunnies? Right.”
The book The Tooth is the usual liberal pablum, totally disconnected from reality. Homelessness is, of course, a complex issue. The chronically homeless (as opposed to someone who’s briefly down on their luck due to job loss or some other crisis and is crashing with family) often have mental health or substance abuse problems…but this post is not about that topic. Rather, it’s about the joy-sucking effect liberalism seems to have on women. It reliably turns them dour and sour and schoolmarmish.
I had a laugh a few days later when I read a post on Dalrock’s blog in which he said the word he thinks of when he watches Hillary Clinton speaking is scold. Unfortunately that really does describe her, but not only her. It seems to describe practically all women who are politically-active liberals.
Liberalism – it will turn you into a sour-faced scold, ladies. And you don’t want that, do you?