Following on in circle time we read one of my favourite books ‘The Story of Everything’ by Neal Layton (remember he also wrote ‘The Tree’ which featured in a blog post a few weeks ago – Neal is a great story teller!). The Story of Everything is exactly as it sounds. The children were taken through the story of the beginnings of our Universe, starting with ‘A very long long time ago there was nothing’ ... and then came the Big Bang, followed by the formation of planets and stars (we discovered the sun is our nearest star). They learned about first life in the oceans, followed by evolution of life onto land, the thought about the timespan of the dinosaurs who were wiped out by the biggest meteorite. We read how that had given way to the smaller mammals to thrive and then from apes evolved humans. We delved into the world of human resilience as they survived the Ice Age wearing the furs from woolly mammoths and lived in caves and dens. As time passed they made houses first in villages and lived on farms and later moved to cities. And the cities grew and the buildings got bigger and humans spread themselves all over the planet. The last page poses the question ‘what will happen next in the story of everything?’ Hmm... an interesting and relevant question. Although I think we can address climate change and the need to be eco warriors at another circle time.
I love stories. I love the joy of hearing stories, reading stories and discovering stories. Be it fiction or historical. This lead me to do a bit of reading around the value of stories particularly for children. There is a lot out there! But suffice to say stories, as we innately know, are immensely good for the soul. They are the life force for imaginations, for developing empathy, for connecting people. We share stories, we learn through stories and our own lives are a collection of stories.
In my reading I came across these wise words from Albert Einstein; ‘If you want your children to be smart, tell them stories. If you want them to be brilliant, tell them more stories.’
The next part of the Story Of Everything lies in their brilliance and imagination.