3rd Grade Wisdom

In our 3rd grade Patriots Book Club yesterday, I was reminded of an important fact – we don’t all see things the same way. At the end of each book we finish, the readers and I “rate” the book on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the highest. Then the reader adds a comment about why he or she rated the book this way. Well, today’s book was fairly popular with several 10’s on the rating, but one reader explained that his rating of a 1 was because it was a boring book. I’m not sure if you’ve ever had the privilege to read a book written by Geronimo Stilton (who just happens to be a mouse journalist living in New Mouse City), but his books are very lively. An interesting discussion about favorite books followed, and since the next reader rated the book a 10,000, the discussion became lively. The exciting element was the fact that nine-year-old readers were discussing the merits of literature with each other and defending their choices quite eloquently. Each reader shared some element of the book that earned the rating given.

Sometimes we forget to ask the “But why?” questions because we don’t like the first answer. We need to remember that even children can use evidence to support their judgments. We just need to keep listening long enough to hear it. So the next time someone shares a quick opinion, give her time to finish by sharing the “why” behind her choice. You just might learn something…

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