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ANALYTIC TEACHINC • Vol. fl, No.

Using Peter Rabbit'


as a PhIlosophical Text
with Young Children

tel' losing them, he ran on four legs and went faster,


DAVID ICENNEDY 10 that I think he might have got away a!Iogether if
he had not Unfortunately run into • gooseberry net.
and got caught by the large buttons on his jad<el It
was a blue jacket with brass buttons, quite new.
nee upon a time there were four little Rab- Peter gave himself up for lost. and shed big tears;
bits, and their names were - Flopsy, but his sobs were overheard by some friendly spaT'
Mopsy, CoUon-tail, and Peter. They rIVed f'OW$. who flew to him in great excitement. and im-
iiiiiiiiiiiii with their Mother In a aand-bank, under- plored him to exert himself. Mr. McGregor came ~
neath the root of a very big fll'-cr.e. with a sieve, whk::h he intended to pop upon the top
~ow, my dears: said old Mrs. Rabbit one morn- of Peter; but Peter wriggled out just In time, leaving
ing, -you may go Into the fields or down the lane, but his jacket behind him. And rushed Into the toolshed,
don~ go into Mr. McGregor's garden: your Father had and jumped Intx:I a can. It would haw been a beauti·
an accident there; he was put In a pie by Mrs. ful thing to hide in. if it had not had so much water in
McGregor. Now run along, and don't get intx:l mis- it. -
chief. I am going out.· Mr. McGregor was quite su,. that Peter was sam..
Then old Mrs. Rabbit took a basket and her um· where In the tool-shed. perhaps hidden underneath a
brella. and went through the wood to the baker's. ftower-pol He began to tum them over carefuUy,
She bought a 10m of brown bread and fiv. currant baking under eadt. Presently Pet.r ,,,..zed -
buns. 1<ertyschoor Mr. McGregor was" after him In no time.
Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottcn-tail, who were good lil· And tried to put his fool upon Peter, who jumped out
tie bun.... went down the lane to gather blackber- of a window, upsetdng three plants. The window was
ries: but Pet«, who was very naughty, ran straight IDa amal for Mr. McGregor. and h. was tired of ru~
away to Mr. McGregor's garden. and squeezed un-
der 1M gatel
ning after Peter. He went back to his i!!1:
Peter SIll down to rest; he wu ~ brNlh and
. F'nt he m. earn. lettucaa and some Fr.nch nmbling with fright, and h. had not the lust Idea
beans; Mel then he at. 10m. radishes; and then, which way to go. Also he wa very damp with sitting
fHling rmher sa. he went to look for 10m. parsley. in that can. After a time he began to wander about,
But round the .nd of a ax:urnber fram., whom going Iippity - rlppity - not very fast. and looking all
should be meet but Mr. McGregorl round.
Mr. Mc:Gregorwa on his hands and knHS plant- He found a door In a wall; but It was locked, and
ing out young cabbages, but h. jumped up and ran there was no room for a fat liltJe rabbit to squeeze un·
after Peter, waving a rake and calling out. ·SIOp derneath. Art old mouse was running In and out over
thiefr the stone doorstep, c:anying peas and beans to her
Peter was most dreadfully frightened; he rushed aJJ family in the wood. Peter asked her the way to the
over the garden, for he had forgotten the way back to gate, but she had such a larg. pea In her mouth that
the gate. He lost one of his shoes among the cal> she could not answer. She only shook her head at
bages, and the other shoe amongst the potatoes. Af· him. Peter began to cry.

53
NOVEMBER 1992

Then he tried to find his way straight across the ~


ature, the philosophical material typically oper-
garden. but he became more and more puzzled. ates as a subtl:Xt, either more or less explicit; it
Presently, he came to • pond where Mr. McGregor
emerges involuntarily from the themes and nar-
filled his water-eans. A white cat was staring at some
,ratives of the srory, rather than the other way
gold-fish, she sat very. very still. but now and then
the tip of her tail ~N:tchtrd as if it Wif. anwi. Piiler
around. It 2em5 rca.-:onable to expect th.u in
thought it best to go away without speaking to her; he some great stories the philosophical material
had heard about cats from his cousrn. little Benjamin would be very accessible, and in others, mort in-
Bunny. choate. One virtue of lipman's pedagogical nov-
He went back towards the tool-shed. but suddenly. els, in which the philosophical material is deter-
quite close to him. he heard the noise of a hoe- minative of story rather than emerging from it, is
scr·(·ritdl. scratch. scratch, scritch. Peter scuttered that they train us - if in somewhat of an anifi-
underneath the bushes. But presently. as nothing cialliterary situation - to look for, find, and ar-
happened. he came out. and climbed upon a wheel- ticulate the philosophy in fictional narrative.
barrow and peeped over. The first thing he saw was
I want to offer some methodological reflec-
Mr. McGregor hoeing onions. His back was turned to-
tions on how to U2 a childn:n's classic as a philo-
wards Peter. and beyond him was the gatel
Peter got down very quietly off the wheelbarrow.
sophical text with children, using Puer Rabbit as
and started running as fast as he could go, along a an example.. Although these reflections are al-
straight walk behind some black-currant bushes. Mr. most ccnainly applicable to other books by Bea-
McGregor caught sight of him at the comer, but Peter trix Potter, all of which c:xplore, with dark,
did not care. He srtpped underneath the gate. and dreamliJc.e, whimsical irony, the psychosocial cos-
was safe at last in the wood outside the garden. Mr. mos of early childhood, it is less certain they can
McGregor hung up the rlltle jacket and the shoes for be applied more generally to aU good children's
a scare-erow to frighten the blackbirds.
. Pete, never stopped running or Iookad behind him
literature. It would seem more realistic that each
story would inspire a relatively unique approach
till he got home to the big fir-tree. He was so tired
to the philosophical preoccupations that charac- )
that he flopped down upon the nice soft sand on the
terize it, depending on the specific nature or type
floor of the rabbit-hole and shut his 8)'8S. His mother
was busy CX)()king; she wondered what he had done
of those preoccupations, and on its own particu-
with his clothes. It was the second little jacket and lar way of evoking them through fictional narra-
pair of shoes that Peter had lost in a fortnightl tive.' But the analysis that follows may provide a
I am sorry to say that Peter was not very well dur- heuristic that is more generally useful in at-
rng the evening. tempting to make the connection between the
His mother put him to bed. and made some camo- methodology of Philosophy for Children and
mile tea; and she gave a dose of it to Peterl "One ta- high quality children's lite:r.uure.
ble-spoonful to be taken at bed-time.· But Flopsy, -,
Mopsy. and Cotton-tall had bread and milk and black.-
berries for supper. NARRATIVE SUBTEXTS .

The sense of depth under deceptive simplicity


Like most literary cbssics for young children, which is characteristic of Peru Rabbit is the ~ult
Beatrix Potter's The Tde t1f Paer RAbbit· is rich in of the interplay of a Dumber of subtexts, which
just those themes and subtext.s which grip the interact in prolific and ambiguous ways with the
early childhood imagination where the construc- surface narrative. Actually there are two surface
tive search for meaning is most intense. The narratives: the story and the illustrations. Perer
book tells a stoJY which the young child recog- RJzbbit is typically read aloud to children, and the
nizes intuitively as expressive of his or her dee}> pictures and the writte:n-word-rcad-aloud3 com-
est social and psychological preoccupations. In- bine to cute a rich, multi-sensory tc:xtuaJ space
deed, this is what good literature does for all worthy of the young child's vivid sensorium, in-
ages. But is it philosophical? Not intentionally, tense imaginative life, and keen sense of wonder.
the way a philosophical treatise, or a so-called Within this textual space, at least three levels of
philosophical dialogue, which is most often one subtextual narrative pattern can be identified.
mind ventriloquizing, or even the novels of the They provide a context for the identification of
sort developed by Mathew Upman for teaching philosophical material in the text, and its the-
philosophy to children, are. In good or great liter- matization in discussion plans.

54
First, the~ is what I will call the develop- tive is also mythic, its themes - transgression,
men~ narrative. The major psychosocial guilt, the conflict beween the drive for individua-
themes of the story - the transgression of boun- tion and authOrity - are specific to the psycho-
daries, conflict with powerful, authoritative social drama of initiative venus guilt. The luger
adults, and being killed - are also key themes of mythic structure of Pmr Rabbi" includes the nar-
the psychosocial crisis characteristic of the ratives or parts of the narratives of the trial of
roughJy 4 to 6 year old child, whom Erikson has the hero, the encounter with giants, and the indi-
described as p~occupied with finding a creative vidual's transgression of limits which leads to his
balance between individual initiative and the downfall.
guilt aDd fear of annihilation which results from
-going too farI and damaging objetts or relation-
ships.· The brilliantly energetic, ohen compul-
sive >yeM old recognizes him or hendf in Peter, TIiE PHILOSOPHICAL ISSUES
that -titde animaJ· whose drive to become his
own person through exploring and mastering the
world is tragically hemmed round by both inner The four narrative levels of the story - the
and outer laws of which he only becomes awan surface narrative of illustrated text, and the de-
through breaJcing them. There are the laws of velopmental, social, and mythic subtexts - pro-
moderation, broken by Peter's gluttony, the laws vide a richly layered context of psychological and
of private property represented by Mr. McGregor social meanings from which to draw philosophi-
and his garden, and the -bw of the jungle· - cal themes, whether ontological, epistemological,
here, with Potter's characteristially oblique ircr or axiological, and to constnJct discussion plus
ny, the law of the garden - rep~sented by Pe- based on them. For example the developmental
ter's father's earlier -accident! subtext, which is about initiative and guilt, in-
Another level of narrative ~tteming I will ca.ll structs us to pay attention to the >year old's
the sodal. It includes economic:, class, and gen- particular approach to the idea of the -good' md
der narratives. Mr. McGregor's garden is a vivid, the ~d.• What is and what is not -laughty,'
coherent analogue for the world beyond the and how do we know when something is 'mis-
young child's home: the world of huge, aU- chief' and when it isn't? Is tbe mouse carrying
powerful, hostile, ambivalent or ~tronizing peas out of the garden doing mischief, or the cat
adults, and of the confusing laws of who can contemplating the goldfish, or the birds, who arc
have what. It embodies perfectly the ordered probably eating seeds? Did the McCregors do
chaos of the economics of sardty, where poten- something ~d· when they killed and ate Peter's
tial allies - other little people - are, like the father? How would the McGregors themselves
mous«; either too intent on their awn survival look at it? What are the criteria for calling some-
needs to pull together, or, like the Qt, would just thing -good.~ What, ror example, is the differ-
as soon eat you too. Only the sparrows, symbolic ence between a 'good. and a ~d· h.ammer? Ice
of both solidarity and transcendence, urge Peter cum cone? Person? Can there be too much of a
towuds freedom. good thing? Can good come out of a bad thing?
Peter is told by his mother not to get into mis- Some things sun out bad and come out good,
chief, but it ia this fundamenully mischievous and some things operate the other way around.
world of -accidents· - of strUCtUral inequity, Can something be both good and bad at the
do~tion, transgression, and the ever-present same time? All of these questions an be instan-
possibility of being eliminated by a more power- tiated with examples from the lives of young
ful player - which be, as a male, must learn to children, and the stories they have to tell of their
mmipulate to his ends. }., a male, Peter must be conflicts, their triumphs, their failures.
-~ugh~ in order to survive, although through The philosophical issues associa ted with the
being naughty, like his father, he may be eaten. werd ·accident· arc also informed by the devel-
As it is, he escapes with.losing his clothes, which opmental subtext. This is a particularly sensitive
are displayed by the oppressor as a deterrent to theme for young children, who tend to see all be-
other challengers of the system. havior, even that of inanimate things, as inten-
Fmally, there is the narrative level which I will tion-laden, and intuitively undentand aU nature
all mythic.. Although the developmental narra-

55
as 'mindful" rather than mechanic.aP Given this and a variety of objects - change as they get
interpretive bias, 'accident' and 'on purpose' older? How do they stay the same?
might have a slightly different twist: Was Peter's The peculiar, whimsical, and suggestive way
father's demise really an accident?6 Was it an ac- in which animals are presented in Peru Rabbir -
cident that Peter lost his coat and shoes? If he in fact they inhabit an anti-world to the human
had been caught, killed, and eaten, would his world, v..fuc:h yet interfaces the latter - also
mother have called it an 'accident'? What kinds raises interesting questions about the similarities
of things are 'on purpose'? Does the sun shine and differences betweeen animals and humans,
on purpose? Do people get angry on purpose? particularly in the areas of thought and language.
Does the doctor hun you with a needle on pur- I have found that children tend to apply a hu-
pose? Issues of causality are not far behind. man thi.nking and talking model to animals until
When two things happen together, when can we quite a late age, which makes for good conversa-
say that one causes the other? tions about the discrepencies which show up
As for the social subtext, the animals in P~rcr when you try to instantiate that. One might ask,
Ral1bit - who comprise everyone except Mr. for example, whether wonns, mts, slugs or tad-
McGregor - are, like children, the 'little people' poles think, plan and talk the way dogs, cats and
in relation to the -adult' world of the garden. rabbits do. If not, what are the differences? The
The young child's drive to be a person in her question of how animals think and intend and
own right is always in the context of the more communicate is related to the classification issue
powerful, sometimes punitive world of adults. oE living versus not living things. What are the
So the animals seem to depend on the human criteria for calling something -alive'? Are the
world, but only illegally, through stealing. This moon, the wind, the ocean, the cora! plant or the
can lead to a discussion plan about what is steal- dandelion seed, or a piece of your skin alive?
ing and what is not. Is the mouse stealing peas? The dramatic difference in behavior between
Are you stealing if you taste a grape in a super- Peter and the -good little bunnies,' Flopsy, Mop-
market? Are you stealing if you or your family sy, and Cottontail, raises gender issues. Although )
are starving and you take food from a supennar- it is never stated that Peters siblings are girls,
k.et? Are you stealing if a big company sends you there are few readen who don't assume it, an im-
something by mistake and you keep it? Mr. pression encouraged by the fact that they dttSS
McGregor seems to feel that the gardm 'belongs like their mother, in red capes. four- to seven-
to' him? What are the criteria for private owner- year"lds ue·ilready keenly aware of the differ-
ship of something? ences between girls and boys, and usuaUy as-
The dark side of the adult-eh.ild relationship is sume genetic causes, an assumption that can be
evoked with ominous power in the encounter be- probed through discussion. If girls and boys'
tweal. Peter and Mr. McGregor, and it raises dressed and kept their hair in the same way,
questions about the authority relation between how, apart from the differences hidden by
childrm and adults. Do you have to do what clothes, could you tell them apan? And the boy/
adults teU you to? What forms the basis of the girl issue is anaJoguous to the animaIlhuman and
authority relationship, and what rights do chil- the ..dult/child issues, in that all three involve
dren have within it~ Then there is the question contrastive pain, in which the relationship be-
of what is the same and what is diffe.n:nt about tween simi.luity and difference is clear in places ,.
adults and children. This question leads to ques- and mlbiguous in othm. This makes for rich
tions about identity across transformations, and possibilities for discussion plans.
perII1Anence and change. Young children are I have just identified only a handful among a
growing physically very fast, and will look very number of possible philosophical thematizations.
diffwm in even three or four yean. What stays Discussion plans could also be built around rules
the same about you and what changes as you and breaking rules, getting lost, danger, adven-
grow? Will you be the same person when you are ture, making mistakes, being afraid, and crying,
grown up? Adults also change their physical ap- to name jUst a few more. Exercises could be con-
pearance as they get older, but in a differmt structed around sentence patterns like the coun-
way. How do other things - animals, plants, terfactual ~t would have been a beautiful thing
to hide in, if it had not had so much water in it';

56
A/fALYTIC T~At.HlNC; • V.I. fl. No. ,

or the ambiguities of meaning in words like ·sor- with symbol systems or -intelligences· ache-
rY in phrases like ·1 am sorry to say that ... ,. or than the linguistic, logical, and personal - i.e..
·time' in ·Mr. McGregor was after him in no spatial, bodily-kinaesthetic, musical' - is emi·
time,' or "'care' in -Peter did not care" nendy suited to the young child's multi-sClsorial
approach to lived experience.
Teachers can tell and act out stories within
INTEGRAnNG THE TEXT WITH stories to introduce or enliven discussions. For
PIDLOSOPHY FOR CHILDREN example, two teachers in cirde might dramatize
METHODS AND MATEJUA1S two • iiccidents,' one of them due to recklessness,
greed, or deviousness, and one not; or two pup-
pets with no obvious sexual or gender character-
Once themes have been idmtified, exercises istics might discuss their bewilderment as to
and discussion plans may be taken from existing whether they are boys or girls.' The young
Philosophy for Children manuals and adapted for child's penona1ized, interactive epistemological
young children, or oew ones may be developed. style calls for all manner of concrete demonstra-
While the philosophical themes involved tend to tion of concepts and relationships, for example
emerge from the narrative patterns of the text, c:xamining reaJ and present animals when dis--
which thinking skills we choose to feature in our cussing the differences between humans and ani-
discussions will depend roughly on the ages and mals, examining ambiguous photographs when
individual characteristics of the chiJdrm in- talking about gmder differences, coordinating a
volved. With a skilled facilitator, children 4-7 can discussion of changing from a child to an adult
work with excitement and rapidly growing skill with growing butterflies in the classroom, and
at making distinctions and connections, classify- bringing in photos &em the family album, and so
;j, ing and categorizing, drawing inferences, predict- 00.• Finiilly, the young child's participation in the
ing consequences, and formulating causal expla- community of inquiry is first centered around
natioo.s. Although they are oot used to the personaJ narrative - around the child's grasp of
)' systematic way in which the community of in- his or her own life as a story which can be re-
quiry practices formulating questions, giving rea- counted, and which acts as a context for making
sons, defining terms, providing instances and il- judgments. So the five-year-old says, not -I think
lustrations, and identifying and wing eiteria, all to be naughty means ...,. bur rather, ·One time,
of these moves are part of normal human lan- when I was home with my mother, and I want-
guage games, and so they have already done ed to play with a toy that my little brother
them at one point or another, either more or less had... ' The teacher heJps young children to a.rtic-
explicitly. It is their new standardization in uJate the higher levels of abstraction which are
group discussion that takes practice. iirready present in the very choice of narrative
Working with four- to seven-year-olds poses content by the child, and in the language games
its own particular problems and opportUnities. already being used to interpret experience.
The young child's love of story and of repetition
are advantages, in that a tat liJce Puu Rabbil can
be read a oumber of times, even before it is ex- CONCLUSION
plored philosophially, to the point where it is
nearly memorized by many children, thus mak-
ing the smtegy of retUrning to the text to check It would seem that at least two characteristics
meaning a n~tural one. That same capacity to be distinguish a philosophic.a..l novel of the sort de-
i.m.mcdiately caught up in the mythic ambience veloped by Upman hom a children's book which
of story makes it easier for young children to ex- is rich in philosophical implications: the philo-
plore the text through acting it out, dramatizing sophical novel very consciously builds themes
it with puppets and musical instruments, or ac- like appearance md reality, the one and the
tion figures, and drawing under its inspiratio~ many, diffen:nces of kind iind of degree, etc. into
which are ways of familiarizing themselves di- its narrative, as well as many pretexts for the
rectlyand non-d.iscursively with the narrative making of generic, mediating, and cu1min.ating
patte11'15 mentioned above. Doing philosophy judgmmts. IO In addition, its plot and chalacters

57
N"OVEMBER. 1992

invariably model the operation and the develop- world are pn:scnt in many children's books, and
ment of the community of inquiry. As such they offer interesting challenges for philosophical
are special texts designed for a direct, pedagogical thematization.
approach to the philosphical themes they con- 8. For a disC\lssion of the six -intelligences,· see
Howard Gardner, Nl1.mtS of Mil'lli (Basic Books,
tain. What they share with children's books like
1983). .
Pelt' Rabbi' is that they both depend on fictional 9. An excellent guide to presenting such skits,
narrative, with the ambiguities and complexities dramatlutions, and ·story problems- to young
created by its multiple subtexts, to communicate children, with a we.aJth of concrete examples, is
concepts. It is through working with the phllosc>- found in Carolyn Pope Edwards, Pro"""i", MorAl
phy embedded at a very accessible level in the ~vtloprru,u irs Y''''"g Qi/Jrc".. C't4tivt A,pTfuuNs
pedagogical novels that we learn to identify and for 'N CL2SSrocrm (re.achen College Press, 1986).
to find a way of accessing the philosophy embed- 10. For ~ succinct and useful discussion of these three
ded at a deeper level in children's literature. The orders of judgment, see M&tthew Upman,
ni"b"g irs EJ!UUtUm (Un'1btidge University Press,
fact that the latter does not directly model the
community of inquiIy does not, in my view, dis- 1991), pp. 164-173.
qualify it as, in some cases anyway, an appropri-
ate pretext for philosophical discussion. In fact a
very fruitful interaction between the two sons
of texts is possible, given the different approach-
DAvid Ke,.lUdy, Ph.D., teAdJ,u iff Ch,1d ",.d
es they offer to the philosophical material they FAmily Studies, Nortlum MichigA" University,
cany.
MArquette, MichigA" And is Cl'-UIitor of
AnAlytic Tuuhi"g.

Nons )
1. Beatrix Potter, Pctcr &lrbit {Frederick Wune,
1902).
2. This principle is also probably tNCr as in the case
of Bauix Potter, for e.ach major author's work as
a whole - whether Aenold Lobel, Maurice
Sendak, William Steig, Hans Christian Andenen,
Else Holme1und Minarik, etc.
3. The written word rud aloud is different from
both the written word re.ad silently, and the
spoken word of stol)'te1li.ng, or even the written
word dramatiud of the JUy.lt is both a tat and
a speech act. .
4. Characterizations of the -eight ages- of the life
cycle are described in Erik H. Erikson, /~"ti'y .rui
1111 Life Cycle (Norum. 1980 (1959)); md CJUIJ1sooJ
,,"" Soc.ury (Norton, 1963). t-
5. For an iDter~sting d.i.scussioo of this phenomenon,
sec Susan Urey, Cmrce,t1Ull OA"ge i" CJUUiNJoJ
(MIT Press, 1985).
6. "Yow f~thu had an accident there 8 is & good
opportunity for an c:xacise on uying one thing
and ruJ.Iy meaning another, and other forms of
euphemism and exaggeration.
7. The interface is indeed strange. In the illustr.ltlons,
Peter is portrayed like a real rabbit, and he is
treated that way by Mr. McGregor; on the other
hand, McGregor hangs Petets clothes on the
san:crow without a second thought. These sorts
of ambiguities about the human and the wnW

58
Peter Rabbit: Forming Communtties of Inquiry in Early Childhood Clusrooms

Exercises and Discussion Plans


Good and Bad and Naughty
Is Peter being naughty?
Is the mouse carrying seeds out of the garden being naughty?
Is the cat being naughty?
Was Mr. McGregor being naughty when he killed Peter's father?
What's the difference between -bad- and -naughty-']

Good and Bad


Say if the following things are good or bad, and why.
A hammer A person
An ice cream cone A thought
A friendship A day
A song A year
A word

Accidents
Was it an accident that Peter's father was killed and eaten by Mr. McGregor?
.. ',
Was it an accident that Peter went to Mr. McGregor's garden?
Was it an accident that Peter lost his coat and shoes?
Did Peter go to Mr. McGregor's garden on purpose?
How can you tell if something is an accident?
( How can you tell if something is OD purpose?
.'
By Accident or 00 Purpose?
The sun comes up It starts raining
The sun comes out A doctor buns someone with a needle
A train wreck You were born
Someone gets angry It gets dark
-~;" ;
.... , ~'.
...... :.~
Stealing
Was Peter stealing from Mr. McGregor?
Was the sparrow stealing?
Was the mouse stealing?
How can you tell when it's stealing?

5 tnll nc or Not?
Getting in a stranger's car and driving it away
Eating a grape in a supermarket
Finding a dollar on the street and keeping it
Find a million dollan on the street and keeping it
Taking food from a store when you are starving
Taking a cookie when you aren't supposed to
Taking a toy from the store
Taking a toy from a baby who doesn't care

. "'0.•.
. ~j.}~~..~~.
~~"
+- ... .:":;'.~.
~ '.
Peter Rabbit: Forming Communities of Inquiry in Early Childhood Classroom.

What Thinks?
Dogs Worms
Cats Radios
Rabbits

Girls aDd Boys


How are girls and boys the same?
How are girls and boys different?
What makes you be born a girl or a boy?
When girls and boys grow up, will they be different?
Why should there be girls and boys?

Girl or Boy?
Run Sleep
Cry Play with doUs
Laugh Play with trucks
Hit Get in trouble

Good Rules or Bad Rules?


Don't hurt other people
.Don't laugh at other people
Drive the speed limit
I Always say please
Don't wear a hat inside
Never speak to strangers
Never look at grownups when you talk to them
Only talk to best friends
Eat with your fingers
Sleep only on the ground
....... Watch only 15 minutes of T.V. per day
:

Getting Lost
Tell a collective story about getting lost
How do you get lost?
How do you get unlost?
What are the different ways of getting lost?

What's it like to Get Lost?


Gening lost is /ike:
Having a dream Being in someone else's story
Your bike breaks Reading a book
Fighting with your mother Exploring a new place

_,.;t".-
~._. "': ~-
.. ..~:. ~~-.:
# - ... :
Peter Rabbit: FormIng Communities of Inquiry in Earty Childhood Classroom;)

f Can You Get


A movie
LOSl in it?
A thought
A book Someone' s face
J A city Your feelings
I
Danger
Have you ever been in danger?
Is Mr. McGregor dangerous to Peter?
Would he be dangerous to you?
Is Peter dangerous to Mr. McGregor?
Is Peter dangerous to the cat?
Is the mouse dangerous?
Are you ever dangerous?

What t s Dangerous?
A toaster A whale
A lion A vacuum cl~er
i A fan .
t A bear
f
i A kitchen knife A policeman
A bathtub A car
I A washing machine A bottle of liquor

t A frog
A mosquito
A shark
A dog
A eat
Darkness
)
What Can Make You Afraid?
A movie Award
A song An animal
A picture A penon
~

A noise The dark


_:~:J I~ A look Water
of

y When Can You Cry?


,.;
When you're happy
When you 're angry
When you love someone a lot
When you Jose a game
When you break a toy
When you spill a drink:
When someone moves away
When you fight with a friend
When you are proud of someone
I Owning
Peter Rabbit: Forming Communities of Inquiry in Eatty Childhood Classrooms

Whllf or whom tin these he/oil); 10. or who owns thtm? How do you know?
Your parents' car Your street
Your bed The moon
Your hody The ocean
Your dog or cat Your thoughts
Your house

Children and Grownups


Is Peter a child? How do you know?
What is the same about children and grownups?
What is different about children and grownups?
Will you still be you when you grow up?
What will be the same?
What will be different?
Will your head, feet, hands, tummy, hair, mouth, eyes be the same?
Are there children and grownups among animals?
Are there children and grownups among plants?
,I What would the world be like if there were no grownups?
!
What would the world be like if there were no children?
-.i What would the world be like if the children told the grownups what to do, and took _ _

,
I
I care of them?
'. What would the world be like if you were born very big and got smaller as you got
older?

Animals and Humans )


Is Peter an animal or a human?
Is Mr. McGregor an animal or a human?
What is the same about animals and humans?
What is different about animals and humans?
"'~
-: Should animals wear clothes?
Do animals think?
Do animals talk?
Do animals have feelings?
Can animals make plans?

What Talks?
A sparrow Bees
A cat Slugs
A mouse Tadpoles
A cabbage Trees
Ants Televisions

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