Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Ant and the Grasshopper

The above is my favorite retelling of this fable. I recommend buying it if you can find it!!!

We have just begun our final Language block of the school year: Fables. We are following the Waldorf 2-day rhythm of telling the story to the children and having them act it out, then sleep on it, then write the story in their own words on the following day and illustrate it in their Book of Fables.

This was an easy one to act out. One student sat in a chair and strummed my dulcimer and the rest of the students raced about frantically on hands and knees and gathered supplies for the winter. They had quite a little stash of erasers and rubber bands and what-not by the time they were done. Of course, the children added in their own dialogue as they went. Acting out REALLY helps them to remember the story well enough to write it on Day 2.

The illustrations in Amy Lowry Poole's retelling include some ants drawn on black paper with white chalk. The chalk is used to fill in the space around the ant bodies so that they are actually black negative space shapes. In a past summer camp, I used this story to introduce and explore this type of illustration.

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