Daniel’s heart hurt as he listened to her daughter Annabel “read” the picture book, as her “reading” reflected some sad interpretations. According to Annabel, the book was about a poor mouse who’d been abandoned by its parents and found itself trapped in a large home.
Angry, the mouse ran away from the home and found its way through the dark streets, where cats, dogs, and other dangers lurked, seeking to devour the little creature. Eventually, the mouse sobbed, blaming his parents for his loss. But by pushing through all dangers, the mouse finally ended up back at a beautiful home to live happily ever after. Annabel’s story seemed to fit the pictures so well, but its interpretation of them completely changed the story’s meaning.
“Do you want to hear what the story actually says?” Daniel asked gently. Annabel nodded, snuggling in her father’s lap to hear.
“Once upon a time, there was a little mouse. His parents didn’t know very well how to parent, and the little mouse found himself separated from them. But he didn’t need to worry. A little boy found him and began caring for him. The mouse had all it needed, but the mouse didn’t listen to the boy’s warnings about leaving the house. He disobeyed, slipping out of the house into the dangerous streets where he was chased by cats and barked at by dogs.
Dangers lurked everywhere, and the little mouse found itself tired and hungry. It cried, wishing it had listened to the kind little boy who had rescued it. But you know what? The little boy hadn’t forgotten the mouse. He’d been pursuing him the whole time and now scooped him up and brought him back to his beautiful home.”
“That’s a very different story, isn’t it, Annabel dear?” Daniel asked as he finished.
Annabel nodded. It was amazing how the same pictures could be interpreted so very differently. Continue Reading.