Miss Mae’s Saturday
Random House Australia, 2016
32pp., pbk., RRP $A16.99
It is a well-known fact, perhaps even a universal truth, that grandmas are the BEST. And Miss Mae’s grandma is no exception. Each Saturday she comes to visit and off they go to the ballet and the zoo and all those other wonderful places that grandmas take their granddaughters. But THIS Saturday is different. Grandma comes, as usual, but the weather is wet and nasty and not nice for being outdoors. Miss Mae is disappointed and even moreso when all that Grandma brings is a large cardboard box and it’s EMPTY! What use is an empty cardboard box?
Well, as well as being awesome, grandmas are also wise. It comes with our advancing years and experience and Miss Mae’s grandma is no different. She knows that a cardboard box can become anything and take you anywhere if you fill it with your imagination, rather than stuff. And so Miss Mae and her grandma set off around the world on the most exciting adventure… In fact, it’s so good that when they get home, Miss Mae can’t wait for another wet Saturday!
With this weekend’s weather forecast for the eastern states, could this story be better timed? Even if it’s not possible for grandma to visit, how much fun is a cardboard box? Even babies know that boxes and wrapping are often more fun than the contents!
This book needs to be tucked into your teacher’s toolbox (or into a large cardboard box) to be brought out when the weekend forecast is not for sunny, play-outside weather. Spark the children’s imagination by asking them where the box is going to take them this weekend and have them draw and talk about their adventures. I can envisage the most exciting wall display of the responses! And if like Miss Mae’s grandma, you suggest the destination – perhaps a country or a time period about to be the focus of a formal study – and have the students write what they know already then you have a wonderful way of setting a pre-test without anxiety or angst.
Imagination, and grandmas, are magical.