Friday, July 8, 2011

Cinderella Stories

It's happened.  Hadley's become obsessed with princesses.  I'm not completely surprised that she's stepped into this world.  I haven't tried to hide the princesses from her.  I myself am a bit of a sucker for those dresses.  I may or may not have had a life dream of wanting to be Scarlet O'Hara (I know she wasn't a princess but you get the idea).

So Hadley and I are doing a little Cinderella study.  We went to the library and checked out as many
versions of the Cinderella story that I could find.  The thing I like about reading with my kids is that it gives me a chance to study what it is that interests them.  I get an understanding of why Hadley loves princesses so much, or why Harper is fascinated by dinosaurs.  And, well, Diego.  But that's another post.
Here's what we did: I created a little worksheet for Hadley that had questions like, "What do you remember about this story?" Or, "What did you like about this Cinderella story?"  "If you could change one thing what would it be?"  I wrote down the responses as Hadley talked.  I also had Hadley draw a picture of something she remembered from the story, as well as practice writing the title down.

We looked at the story Cinder Edna first and I noticed Hadley had a hard time copying the letters down (they were in script).  When we lookedat another Cinderella story, Hadley breezed through copying the letters down and said, "Whew!  I'm real glad these these letters aren't pretty."  It took me a second to figure out what she meant, but I figured out it was easier for her to copy block lettering.  This seems significant in our study of Cinderella in that not everything that is beautiful is actually appreciated or functional.  Just a thought.

This is my favorite picture of Hadley's from our study:
A castle, a carriage, and a "path to get to the castle."

When we were discussing the different stories, I liked that Hadley said things like, "I remember that Cinderedna learned to play the accordion," in Cinderedna.  Or, "I didn't like the prince's hair" in the Cinderella that happened to be the Caldecott winner.  I'm glad I kept my mouth shut because it was fun to remember why I liked this story so much as well.  The gowns, the fairy godmother, the balls, the pumpkin turning into a carriage.  I think the idea that anything is possible is what's so appealing in this story. 

So that's why I don't react much to the stepsisters' cruelty, or the fact that Cinderella's father doesn't do much to help his daughter out.  If Hadley wants to discuss these points, that's fine, but I like exploring this story through her eyes.  There's time for these sorts of discussions later.

For right now, we'll focus on tiaras and glass slippers, and all things sparkly.


  1. I love the activities you did with her interest in Cinderella! How awesome! I have plans to do some similar things with my younger kids current interests and you've given me the inspiration to get back to my plan.

    She's adorable, by the way!


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  2. following you from voiceboks <3

  3. You should try "Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal: A Worldwide Cinderella" by Paul Fleischman. It's a compilation story of different Cinderella stories from around the world with gorgeous illustrations. I recently used it in my library program, "Cinderella Around the World" and it was a great success!

  4. Great post. :) My daughter is really into princesses, too.

  5. So special of you to sit down, and read with your kids. It's such good old fashioned quality time together! Thanks for coming by Mommy LaDy Club:)

  6. Great post! What a creative way to look at a variety of books.

    Has she read "The Very Fairy Princess" and "The Very Fairy Princess Takes the Stage"? There's plenty of sparkle, and a girl that insists she's a VERY Fairy Princess, despite scabby knees and sagging socks. Great books!