“Edwina: The Dinosaur Who Didn’t Know She Was Extinct” by Mo Willems

 

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Edwina was known for more than her accessories. She would lend her tail at the playground when children needed a slide, and she would gladly change a lamp light in the street. She also baked the best chocolate chip cookies for everyone.  She shouldn’t be doing any of those things though. She shouldn’t be. As any other T-Rex, she should be extinct. Was Reginald Von Hoobie-Doobie the only one to realize that? How could he make everyone listen? Well, he couldn’t convince everyone, but Edwina was willing to hear him out. Reginald was right. Now Edwina also knew she was extinct. And it didn’t change a thing. 

In other words,  with the right attitude, anything is possible. The facts might be what they are, we don’t need to deny them, but it is up to us to decide how we want to feel about them. We can simply choose not to be bothered.

The other day my almost 4-year-old son was standing next to a girl with quite irregular facial features. He looked at her for a while and then he simply said: “You look weird.” He wasn’t trying to be rude, rather inquisitive, but since I wasn’t sure how the girl or her parents were interpreting it, I pulled him quickly aside and tried to explain that such comments could seem hurtful. “How would you feel if someone told you that you looked weird? What would you do?” I confronted him hoping for some remorseful reflection on his side. I forgot I was talking to my own little Edwina, though. “I would say it back”, he responded light-heartedly.  And I have no doubt he would. Just like Edwina, my son can’t be bothered. (And just like Reginald, my other son just needs to be heard.)

 

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“WHOOPS!” by Suzi Moore

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Can you imagine an animal that couldn’t find its voice? Well, there was once a cat that couldn’t meow, a dog that couldn’t woof and a mouse that was incapable of uttering a squeak. What were they to do? According to a wise owl, an old lady in a tumbledown house knew a spell that would set things right. It took her a few tries, but she finally found the right spell the animals found their voices. But wait a minute…. Who is that croaking old lady now? Whoops!

If you are looking for a book that speaks hilarious, this frolicky, rhythmical read-aloud is the one. “WHOOPS!” simply bursts with outrageous humor on every level. From a sequence of comic disasters as a plot, to playful rhyme with catchy repetitions, and hysterical pictures by Russell Ayto, the story is a serious giggle trigger.

I could alsmost call “WHOOPS!”pure entertainment. But isn’t it more than that? What makes this book a real gem is that next to the whole comedy, the book isn’t deprived of an important message. Just like the cat, the dog and the mouse, we all need to find our own voice. Happy searching, everyone!