This year I’m doing a year-long study of Charlie Chaplin and so, wanting my first read aloud book to connect, I decided to start with Brian Selznick’s marvelous Caldecott winner, The Invention of Hugo Cabret. As many know it has much to do with early films in plot, art, sensibility, and design. Having read aloud many a picture book and the occasional graphic novel I figured I could pull off this unique hybrid of a book.
It turned out to be absolutely fantastic and even better than I could have hoped. The handful of kids who already knew the book absolutely adored having it read to them. And those new to it were loving it too. One had dreams about it! The cinematic quality of the drawings and text made it work perfectly alongside our viewing and consideration of Chaplin’s earliest films. These kids are becoming expert viewers!
It was a very quick read and so I finished it yesterday, two weeks into the school year. And then I took them to the book’s website where they saw a bit more about aspects of the book and, most importantly, they saw A Trip to the Moon.
Now we are eagerly awaiting the movie. I will be curious how the book is repackaged at that point.