Monday, October 1, 2012

Teen Activities: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

By: Deborah Pace Rowley

Are you familiar with this amazing storybook App? Were you surprised that I have labeled it as a teen activity? At first glance, this animated picture book would seem like the perfect story to share with our preschool and elementary age children. And it is. Then why am I encouraging you to share it with your teenagers? 

Younger children will delight in the story’s clever details and all the amazing ways they can interact with the text. But they will miss the deeper meaning behind the story that can launch an amazing conversation with a teenager. If you haven’t already, read my previous post about encouraging a rich inner life here. Then share The Fantastic Flying Books with your teenager and ask a few of these questions:

What do you think Morris wrote in his book before the hurricane? 
What do you think he wrote after the hurricane when he was in the library?   
Why was he in black and white at the beginning of the story? 
What changed his life to color? 
What do you think the story meant when it said there was a book for every person? 
Have you found your book yet? What is it? 
Does everyone have a story to tell? 
What is your story? 
What are your joys and sorrows? 
How do you want your book to turn out? 

After reading this simple but powerful book even more questions will come to you. Don’t miss the 17-minute silent film that inspired the picture book. It is also included in the app. If you don’t have an iPad, you can get the book as a hardcover or watch the silent film separately on iTunes.  The app itself is $4.99. Trust me, it is worth every penny!

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