Over the course of several days before Christmas vacation our class read The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojiechowski together at meeting time. It is a beautiful story about an unhappy wood carver who rediscovers joy as he carves a manger scene for a young boy and his mother. While the story has a great message, it is a stretch for our active 4- and 5-year-olds to sit still for a longer reading such as this one. Miss Ruth read it aloud over the space of 3 days, taking on the characters’ personas and using different voices and inflections. Although our Grasshopper students still had occasional wiggles, the story engaged the children’s thoughts and imagination and they were able to summarize the previous reading each day. It was a good lesson for me, to see how children’s attention spans can be stretched with meaningful material presented in an engaging way.
If you’d like to borrow this book and read it at home, I have a copy in the office. Happy New Year everyone!