critical reading

Mary is turning into such a good reader. I mean, such a thoughtful reader.

Tonight, we were reading “Horton Hatches the Egg.” For those of you not familiar with this pachyderm classic, Horton the elephant agrees to sit on a bird’s egg to give her a break. She flies off and doesn’t come back, and he sits on the egg for almost a year. He’s eventually captured by hunters and sold to a circus–but he won’t stop sitting on the egg, because he promised to care for it. People come in and pay $.10 to see the elephant sitting in a tree.

One night at the circus, the mother bird flies in, just as the egg begins to hatch. She tries to reclaim the egg, but then it hatches, and it turns out to be an elephant bird, so clearly it belongs to Horton.

On the last page, Horton and the elephant-bird baby “go home happy, one hundred percent.”

Mary liked this story, but she asked, “Why did the circus people send them home?”

I had to admit that I didn’t know. She said, “Because I bet people would ALSO pay ten cents to see an elephant bird, and if they were really nice people at the circus, they wouldn’t have captured Horton in the first place.” I agreed. She said, “I wish Dr. Seuss had told us WHY they sent Horton home. And how they know where he lives [since in the story he is captured by hunters and sold to the circus]. Dr. Seuss must know why, since he’s telling the story, but he didn’t put it in!”

I agree–this story is a little short on the character motivation front–and I’m so proud of how curious she is.


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