Her Eye is On the...Sign

Posted 17 January 2014 12:00 AM by Toni "Bee" Brooks, Interactive Readings Teaching Artist for Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas

One thing I adore about children’s picture books is often times at the end there is a moral to the story, a lesson from the tale.

As I traveled around the city I noticed there was always something reinforcing my literary mission. That something was signs.

Yes signs – and I mean literally.

There was the Boston Public Library reading when I stood in the lobby prepping ‘How The Grinch Stole Christmas” and my jaw dropped, then a smile gleamed as a strolled over to these words spread high up on the wall in the library lobby:

"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." - Dr. Seuss Coincidence? No way – I took that as my FORWARD signal. Though I meant to simply march with Seuss’ nouveau ‘Noise, Noise Noise…” makers while “Elf” Josie knelt low to show the cartoons - my toddling indeed became more of a prance! Another time I arrived at The Hennigan School in Jamaica Plain to a bunch of three and four year olds and JP Moms with their own babes. In prep mode, I cornered myself, wondering ‘which way shall I arrive from the ‘North Pole’? Of course I wonder for in my mind it is a must for me to be unique at all of the varied sights. After all, each site and the folks who hang there are one of a kind – and my readings should be too. As I pondered about this, I glanced up and on the adjacent wall I saw this:

POW- This sign sparked a positive charge to my entrance. Of course I buzz-flew in from the ‘Pole’ and was rewarded by the young granting me a hive- full extraordinary acting.

SOMETIME though - people are the signal – and that light blinks and urgent green.

I truly wanted to read to kids who could not come out to the readings even if they wanted to. ‘OrganizedElf’ Teisha scheduled a reading at Tufts Floating Hospital for Children. I admit I thought we would be performing for a room of youth, but due to the health conditions the kids were dealing with, it was not to be. Instead the hospital allowed us to read to one young adult. That teenager loved ‘The Grinch’ ; that teen had a dog named Max and there was something else… that teenager had been a part of past Citi Center Education Programs!

This young lady was a beacon-blessing of green light inviting us to GO into her hospital room to read and act, to make her a Noise maker as well. She chose for us to come - regardless of her pain, despite the ice packs she needed for it.

What makes The Grinch readings fun yet learn-ed for me is my eye’s willingness to still seek signs. The storyteller in me hunts for the lesson. Our patient/participant taught me the moral to my, her, our story - a moral that we often forget: ‘GO, keep going, and make it Awesome – never let anything make you stop”!

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