Recently I decided that my three-and-a-half-year-old son was old enough to start reading the Skippyjon Jones books, by Judy Schachner.
I suggest you start with the first of the series, “Skippyjon Jones” and then move on to the others in no particular order, “Skyppyjon Jones and the big bones”, “Skippyjon Jones, lost in spice”, “Skippyjon Jones in mummy trouble”, “Skippyjon Jones in the doghouse”, etc. If you can, get the books with the audio version on CD read by the author herself. She’s not only a great writer, but also a wonderful story teller! Her voice instantly brings all characters to life and you can’t help yourself from following along and clapping on cue.
As you’ll soon find out, Skippyjon Jones is a Siamese cat with large ears and an even larger imagination, or possibly a personality disorder… When you share these stories with your kids, you’ll hear them say every day, “My ears are to beeg for my head. My head is too beeg for my body. I am not a Siamese cat, I am a Chihuahua!”. Eventually your kids will come up with similar sayings on their own, out of their own imagination, so enjoy listening in and seeing what they come up with!
I love how Skippyjon Jones creates his own adventures in his bedroom closet, even though those usually end up abruptly, with a sudden return to reality. Reading the Skippyjon Jones books is a great way to remember what it was like to be that age and invent your own stories. Now, I get to enjoy seeing my children be encouraged to do the same.
Obviously, I never saw as a child how much imagination my little brain contained, so it’s a wonderful experience to see creativity in action with my own children. Too quickly, society will ask them to conform to “the norm”, so I believe it is my responsibility as a parent to preserve and encourage their free play and flow of imagination. And what better way to reconnect with my own inner child that to take part in their adventures?
Freebie: Skippyjon Jones has its own website, with games and short clips!
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