JohnJohn’s preschool is closed. As a result, “Mommy School” is officially in session. While spending time together, there has been a new phenomenon in our household called “troublemakers”. JohnJohn sees them everywhere and they create all kinds of trouble. They spill milk on the floor, leave toys out, and say things that are not very nice. According to my son, “troublemakers” are “spooky” and can be found in closets and under beds. Well, I finally had enough of these “troublemakers” menacing our household! I told JohnJohn that they had to go ASAP! So one night, I, with JohnJohn as my sidekick, “fought” every troublemaker that could have possibly existed in our house. JohnJohn greatly delighted watching me air punch and air kick like a madwoman. I haven’t heard him talk about the “troublemakers” lately, but if they come back, I’m ready for them. At age 3, JohnJohn is understanding what makes a “good” person and what makes a person a “troublemaker”. A Tough Nut To Crack, by Eric VanTuyl not only addresses individuality but defines what makes outstanding character.
Acorn and Peanut tell the story about their very close friend, Macadamia. Macadamia behaves differently than his friends. Yet, despite these differences what shines even brighter is his helpfulness, devotion, and loyalty to his friends and others around him.
In the story, all of Macadamia’s friends are various types of nuts such as acorns, peanuts, pecans, and walnuts. Connecting individuality to the different types of nuts is clever and will help young readers to understand the idea of uniqueness. Also, this story messages how we must learn to accept others for who they are. Mac does not play like others, sleep like others, or even eat like others. However, his friends accept his uniqueness and know that he can always be counted on. In addition to addressing differences, the story defines what it means to have outstanding character. Macadamia’s character teaches that the core of who you are is just as important as the shell. Macadamia might behave differently from others, but he helps those in need and always supports his friends. As we journey through the age of 3, I know that this will be a story that JohnJohn and I will reference often. There will come a time when he needs to be reminded of what it means to be virtuous or what to do when he faces another “troublemaker”.