Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Favorite Children's Book

As a child, I loved reading and being read to. I can't imagine that's very different from many people in this class. I grew up seeing my parents and older brother with a book in hand throughout vacations, evenings, and weekends. I saw reading as a great form of entertainment and I sought to discover how to participate in this past-time. One particular book that I loved (and still do) is C. S. Lewis' The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Although I love all seven books in the Narnia series, this particular story is one that I read the most. In fact, I still love reading the series and keep all the stories on a bookshelf with my textbooks and dictionaries so that I can read through them every once in a while.

I think I've enjoyed Lewis' stories so much because of the simple dialogue, use of children as main characters, and the vast amount of creativity used in his stories. The dialogue seems to be kept short and almost choppy, but this creates a very realistic and believable interaction between characters. The use of children as main characters always kept my attention as a child myself. Although I couldn't relate to the exact experiences in the book, I could relate to the fears and struggles that the Pevensie children had. I love the amount of creativity it took Lewis to depict such a bizarre world with talking animals and power struggles among them. Such a world is what many children can only dream of and his stories can take them there.

I would love to use this story and/or other Narnia stories in the classroom as a way to encourage creative writing. I want children to see that, as a writer, you don't need to stay within the reality in which we live. There are endless possibilities that may seem peculiar or unusual, but amazing stories can come through if we are confident in them. Lewis' example in his stories shows teachers and students (readers in general) that there is no set of rules as to how to write a believable and creative story.

-Barns and Noble website for purchase-

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