Thursday, May 19, 2011

When Narratives Collide

This week I watched something interesting happen. I've never seen it happen in exactly this way.

On one side of our dramatic play area, two kids were pretending to be a family going to church. They had a purse and wallet, money, doll in a carrier, and the "car" set-up (chairs and the steering wheel).

Driving to church

Listening in worship service
This play lasted a long time--driving to the church, reading the Bible, giving an offering, and so forth. I was intrigued with all that they did to play out this scenario.

On the other side of the area, near the kitchen, two kids were cooking. They were using the dishes and the table as they played. This type of scenario is played out often in my room.

Cooking up good stuff

Setting a beautiful table
Some elaborate thinking and talking went on as they played.

Then the two scenarios collided. And this happened.

Dining out
The church-goers had driven from church to the restaurant. I watched as two kids were customers and two kids were restauranteurs. The customers ate while the others served. When finished, out came the wallet and purse and the servers were paid. As the customers made their way back to their car, one girl called out, "Y'all come back anytime." (We do live in the south after all.)

My kids did it again - they surprised me. I wasn't there when the actual collision happened. (I was taking photos of the tape pictures.) But it seems like the two independent narratives just merged into one cohesive whole.

I think that's what happens to us as individuals. We move along in our independent narratives until we merge with other narratives--at work, school, home, church, wherever. Then our independent narratives become joined as a more cohesive narrative. We may separate at some point but each narrative is richer for having been a part of the other.

Well, enough philosophical musings for now. Back to my classroom - it was really cool! And all of that play was guided and directed by...the kids themselves. Super cool!


  1. I love this Scott - you have described it beautifully.

  2. i love all of this! awesome stuff all around.

  3. Children are simply awesome! I don't know why we (adults) try and complicate things for them quite so much :)