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The art of playing with a story

THE BALTIMORE SUN

THINK ABOUT IT

When you and your child share a book, play a thinking game. Ask, "What would you do if you were in the story?" Or try posing a crazy question like, "What would happen if there were five little pigs in 'The Three Little Pigs'? How would the story be different? What other materials would the fourth and fifth pigs use to build their houses?"

These books are great for problem solvers:

* "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs," Judi Barrett (Simon & Schuster Children's, 1982; $5.99). What would you do if you were stuck in Chewandswallow? How would you get out?

* "Grandfather Twilight," Barbara Berger (Philomel, 1984; $16.99). Where do you think the moon comes from?

* "Jazper," Richard Egielski (Harper-Collins, 1998; $14.95). How does a sweet bug who is trying to care for his injured dad outwit a bunch of evil shape-changing moths?

* "Mouse Practice," Emily Arnold McCully (Scholastic, 1999; $15.95). How does a young mouse become a better baseball player?

* "Poppleton Forever," Cynthia Teague (Scholastic, 1998; $3.99). How will Poppleton the pig keep the new tree he has planted in his yard healthy?

-- Scholastic Parent and Child, February/March 1999

Pub Date: 02/28/99

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