Book Learning: Mrs. White Rabbit Comes to Class
Hey there, Book Learners!
It’s been a good week: I have flowers on my desk, we’re inching our way towards spring (whether Mother Nature decides to acknowledge it or not), and best of all, there are bright/shiny/beautiful new books in the warehouse.
I’ve spent so many weeks poring over Mrs. White Rabbit (and its many, many carrot recipes; more on this later) that I keep having to remind myself that it was only officially published two weeks ago. It’s nice to hear people’s reactions to it, especially when they seem to like it as much as I do.
To be fair, there’s a lot to like. Mrs. White Rabbit is, as you might guess, the wife of the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland. Through Mrs. White Rabbit’s diary entries, readers get a whole new perspective on Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland.
I can think of dozens of novels that have reimagined classic books (the Splintered series by A. G. Howard plays with the Alice books as well), but personally, I’d love to see more picture books do what Mrs. White Rabbit does. Because the result is stunning.
So today I thought I’d celebrate Mrs. White Rabbit with some activity suggestions.
Activity #1: Scavenger Hunt (through the pages)
There are a ton of Easter eggs hidden in the illustrations of Mrs. White Rabbit. If you’ve read Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland before (the movie version works too), study the illustrations in Mrs. White Rabbit and see how many references you can catch! This is especially fun to do in a classroom or with a friend, because then you can see who manages to find the most Easter eggs. And maybe you can reward the winner with . . .
Activity #2: Try a Carrot Recipe
Yes, I’m coming back to the carrot recipes. There are a hundred of them in Mrs. White Rabbit. And that’s not an exaggeration.
And while the book doesn’t have instructions on how to make them (it was hard enough fitting a hundred names on the page), with a little web browsing, you can find out how to make these dishes yourself. And is there anything better than pairing a book with delicious food? I don’t think so.
Activity #3: Create Your Own Twist on a Classic
As I said earlier, lots of people have created their own twists on classic tales. Try making one of your own! Take a book you love, and try to imagine what would happen if you did something differently: What if Elizabeth Bennett from Pride and Prejudice was a zombie hunter? What would Anne of Green Gables look like from Gilbert Blythe’s point of view? Would Romeo and Juliet work as a musical? What about Harry Potter as a TV series? (That last suggestion is earnest; please someone make this.) You can do this by yourself or with a group.
Bonus: If you are working with a group, try finding a book that all of you have read, and then have everyone try to create their own twist on that particular book. Then share your answers and see what people came up with!