“Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?”
[Albus Dumbledore–J. K. Rowling]
Any avid reader would agree that well-crafted stories stick with you. The memories of playing riddles with a creature in a cave, having tea with a scarf-wearing faun, and being sorted into a house of burgundy and gold become as real to the reader as they do to the book-bound characters. Please note, that imagination is the key to a successful, fictional-memory-making mind.
Imagination really is the truest form of magic, and as a twenty-something-year-old I pride myself in still having a highly functioning make-believe machine. Before going on too much further, let me add a little bit of an “about the author” excerpt to this first blog entry:
–I am a wife, a reader, and a tea-drinker. And also, by day, I am a very enthusiastic preschool teacher. I have been working with little ones for going on six years now and what I have come to learn is this: children are storytelling masters! And why are they so good at it, you may wonder? The answer is simple, children play for the professional imagination team!–
The Adventure Begins. . .
Now, going back to my own prized imagination, well, my preschoolers can and will out-make-believe me every time, without fail! And I humbly accept this defeat. Therefore, here is my ultimatum for all fully grown fantasy builders: You are a guide for the next generation of pretenders, so make the most of it. Set up free play situations for children, encourage curiosity through new experiences, and most of all read all of the time. I believe that reading to children should be a vital part of those formative years.
Don’t know where to start? Fret not, that’s where I come in; think of me as the genie of children’s books. “Unlimited Early Child Literacy Wishes Granted Here!”
I will end this initial post with the poem I read to my students on the first day of class by the extremely talented Shel Silverstein:
If you are dreamer, come in.
If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar,
A hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer,
If you are a pretender, come sit by my fire.
For we have some flax-golden tales to spin.