Thursday, April 3, 2008

Whoopie Once! Whoopie Twice!

Today, I'm flashing back to 1975.

I was eight years old, and if memory serves, was exposed to the animated "Really Rosie" as a syndicated special. The half hour video adapted the poetry and artwork of Maurice Sendak, best known then and now for Where The Wild Things Are. In less than 30 minutes, a short series of books called The Nutshell Library was set to music and performed by the legendary Carole King.

For decades afterwards, songs such as "One Was Johnny" and Chicken Soup With Rice," were lodged in my head.

Flash forward to last year on a trip to Massachusetts, when I was able to pick up a copy of the special on VHS in a used book store. Said video was filed away, with my thinking I would enjoy it again when the time was right.

Today, the time was right. I had a half-hour hole in my lesson plan on poetry, so I screened the video for my eighth grade middle school classes (I teach English, by the way) to reinforce the concepts of alliteration and rhyme.

I wasn't sure the admittedly dated animation would hold some of the attention of today's kids ... but, amazingly enough, all of my blocks were well-behaved, and seemed to really enjoy the special! There was no sleeping, and talking was non-existant. A pleasant surprise, and one that helped me to remember that even today's jaded teens are still children in so many ways....

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