Archive for February, 2011

One of the things that small children must learn is to wait. To wait their turn, to wait in line, to wait until they’re there….

It’s rough, you know?

Anyone who has had a small child of their own (or taught a group of them) knows, it’s tough to get them to wait.

And it’s even tougher to get them to not interrupt–because, everything, everything is so important, you need to know it right. this. second. no matter what you are doing.

I’ve been dealing with this issue all this year. Hands shoot up, if I’m lucky, and they wait (if I’m REALLY lucky) for me to call names and listen.

But really, it’s so much easier just to interrupt.

So, when I saw Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein on my Scholastic book order last month, I had to order it. Yes, it’s a hard back. But it’s a fantastic book, and I’m not the only one who thinks so.

I have twenty-one kinders who adore it.

The story’s simple. Papa shuffles Chicken off to bed, whereupon Chicken demands a bedtime story. Papa warns little Chicken about interrupting and Chicken promises she will be good. So good.

And she is.

Until Hansel and Gretel are about to enter the witch’s house, and Chicken yells out a warning. So they don’t enter. The End.

Try number two involves Little Red Riding Hood and just as she’s about speak to the wolf, Chicken yells, “Don’t talk to strangers!” So she doesn’t. The End.

Chicken begs Papa for another story, promising she won’t interrupt, but Chicken Little doesn’t warn Henny Penny, Turkey Lurkey, or Ducky Lucky, because… well, Chicken’s interrupted again.

Papa’s out of books and Chicken’s still not sleepy so she reads a story to Papa. One she’s written and illustrated herself.

Papa does the interrupting this time with his snoring.

A delight to read and, judging from my class, a delight to hear. Best of all, however, is the fact that they understand what interrupting is by the end, and now, all I need to ask my just-can’t-wait-to-tell-you students is, “Are you an interrupting chicken?”

And of course, they must admit they are.


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