Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Charlotte's Web

Over the last month we've been revisiting and old family favorite read aloud- Charlotte's Web. We've all been sharing it either by me reading to the kids or by J6 reading to all of us. Nothing like the sweet sound of a young, confident reader to fill a homeschool mama's heart! This was the book that really helped J6 to love chapter books being read to him. We had some read aloud dates with just him and I and from that time on, he's loved it. But for the last month we've been participating in the big Community Read of Charlotte's Web. A local reading organization which helps equip families to make great readers (through various programs like free books at birth and well visits along with the first day of Kindergarten- they were featured in the latest edition of Jim Trelease's The Read Aloud Handbook) sponsored the read. They did a fantastic job making it a fun thing to be a part of. There were webs all over town- yes all four word webs were depicted. We found two and I think the third is in our grocery store and I keep forgetting to look up at our check out and snap a shot!

The first web was spotted along the fence at the high school.

You couldn't miss these signs everywhere and free books were given to every county 4th grader at least- we scored a free copy as a homeschooling family as well. If you missed a shot at the free copy, they are for sale for just $3 in a bunch of places around town.
His manuscript was partially typed and partially handwritten.

He studied spiders intently and sketched it on his first page. He wanted Charlotte to be just right. We'll be studying Garth Williams as our artist of the month in April and it turns out that EB White hand picked Mr. Williams for the job.

 One of the highlights for us was going to the library to see the display of EB White's work. White was a 1921 graduate of Cornell University and the original manuscripts are held in the archives on campus. These pictures show copies of the original which were on display. It was really something to see his penmanship and then all the work he did on his drafts. There for us to see were a bunch of drafts of the first chapter and how he got from "there was a pig born in a barn" to "Hey Pa, where are you going with that ax?" Such great stuff!

We found Humble at the county library.

The month culminated with a stage production of Charlotte's Web at a historic theater. We were able to get free tickets for the family and enjoyed a lovely little show on Sunday afternoon. E13 is on our local 4H Fair Board and he was helping to hand out flyers about this summer's county fair. "Excuse me, did you know Fern was a 4Her showing Wilbur off at the fair? I'm a 4Her too and we'd love to see you at the Fair. If you hold on to this coupon, you can play a free game!" The county 4H program had a cute display on pigs. Of course.


Crystal in Lynden said...

That is awesome. What a great city you live in. I love the webs all over town.

Julie said...

What a cool thing to be a part of! I picked up Charlotte's Web at our annual library book sale for .50 last month! Can't wait to read it to my kids!

Shonda said...

That is so cool! If you want to extend your E.B. White study, I heard that the audio version of Trumpet of the Swan is read by Mr. White himself! I haven't listened to it myself, but a friend told me it is really good and cool to hear him read his own work. :)

Shonda said...

You know what, I just fact checked what I said and I was wrong. :) It is Charlotte's Web that he read for audio.

Heather said...

Oh that is too bad Shonda...Trumpet of the Swan is one of my favorites! But I will check out the audio of Charlotte's Web. Thanks!