I'm winding down this year's stint as a volunteer reader for a second-grade public school class. Earlier this week I took in Where the Wild Things Are, Maurice Sendak's classic picture book.
Usually this group is bouncing with enthusiasm but not this time around. It was hot in the classroom (the school has no a.c.), the kids were finishing their breakfast, and energy was flagging. Very few except the reliably talkative Charlotte* wanted to make a related comment when I closed the book, although Alex* took the opportunity to announce that it was his birthday.
Finally Viviana*, a girl in pink glasses and pigtails, raised her hand. She has never spoken during read-aloud. I was happy that she was going to participate.
"Yes?" I said.
"That is NOT like the movie," she said.
"No, it isn't, is it?" I said, sounding hopeful. (A guess on my part since I never actually saw the film.)
Her eyes narrowed.
"It is not AT ALL like the movie," she said, folding her arms across her chest and staring me down.
She did not care to elaborate. Neither did anyone else.
Our discussion came to a close.
I totally bombed. I have to laugh, though, remembering it.
*not their real names