Saturday, October 31, 2009
My Turn to be King!
My daughter got to wear her new Max costume last Sunday...but I got to wear it to my preschool parties this week!! If I look tired, that's because this was taken on the 2nd preschool Halloween party of the week (we had one for the T-Th class and one for the MWF class). Thank you Neil, for letting me borrow your book! The kids really enjoyed the story, and we all had a chance to roar our terrible roars, gnash our terrible teeth, roll our terrible eyes and show our terrible claws!
Before I read the story to the kids, I gave them a brief synopsis by paraphrasing this info from Wikipedia...
It tells the story of Max, who one evening plays around his home, "making mischief" in a wolf costume. As punishment, his mother sends him to bed without supper. In his room, a mysterious, wild forest and sea grows out of his imagination, and Max sails to the land of the Wild Things. The Wild Things are fearsome-looking monsters, but Max conquers them "by staring into their yellow eyes without blinking once", and he is made "the King of all Wild Things", dancing with the monsters in a "wild rumpus". However, he soon finds himself lonely and homesick, and he returns home to his bedroom, where he finds his supper waiting for him, still hot. (I don't tell them this part in bold...that's when I say, "Let's read the story and find out what happens!")
After the story, I try to answer any questions they have, and I tell them a little more about the book...for example....did you know that Maurice Sendak originally was going to call this book "Where the Wild Horses Are" ? But, lucky for us, he didn't like his drawings of horses, so his publisher suggested he make things" instead! And...all of his wild things are based on his Yiddish aunts and uncles that would visit his childhood home in Brooklyn!
I'm looking forward to seeing the movie, which is NOT a movie for young children! Commonsensemedia.org suggests this movie for ages 9 and up. Here's what they say...
Parents need to know that director Spike Jonze's adaptation of Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are isn't appropriate for younger kids, even those who adore the book (there's a big difference between looking at a beautifully illustrated children's story and watching a live-action movie full of sights and sounds that will probably scare the average 4-year-old). The movie explores mature themes of loneliness, insecurity, and fear of change, both within Max's human family and the one he finds on his adventure. The island that Max lands on can be a scary and dark place, and the Wild Things themselves aren't above threatening (repeatedly) to eat Max, as well as becoming hot-headed and destructive (and when a Wild Thing gets destructive, it can be quite intense). The movie also has a slower, dreamier feel than many other kids' movies, and relationships and storylines aren't always neatly resolved. There's some mild language ("damn," "stupid") and a quick glimpse of Max's mom and her boyfriend drinking wine and kissing, but otherwise the PG rating is due mostly to Max's occasionally frightful time with the mysterious Wild Things.
So if you're a parent...go see it yourself first! Happy Halloween everyone!
And now," cried Max, "let the wild rumpus begin!