Friday the 1st of September was a very special day for both myself and the Monsters. It’s the day we went to meet the kids at Lismore Public School.
Via request from Miss Geihe, one of the wonderful teachers at Lismore Public, who had read our book Mum’s Marvellous Monster Spray, to her class, we made the special trip to Lismore, Monsters and all.
Our book had made a huge impression on the class, when it was first read to them about a month ago. I received wonderful book reviews from all the students. I thought that seeing they went to such effort by reviewing our book, it should be rewarded with a very personal Thank You from us.
The book had opened a dialogue about Monsters, fear, beliefs/ disbelief, feelings and personal experiences about the topic of Monsters. There was definitely a variety of mixed opinions in the class as to the existence of Monsters. I heard a child repeat what his parents had said “there’s no such thing as Monsters” but it was said in such an uncertain tone by the child, that I knew that personal experiences were being set aside. One of the kids, had a full list of Monsters that they had and questions of what they should do in every instance.
My single most important question to the class was “If you see, hear or sense a Monster, ask yourself, what would you like to do. Would you like to be that Monsters friend or would you like that Monster banished forever?” It is a question that makes the child understand that they have a choice. It is up to them to ascertain and understand the feelings associated with Monsters. It is up to the child to decide what to do and we as elders are here to guide their decision.
Imagination is an extremely important part of life, it’s where the best inventions, entertainment and art come from. If we as guides, suppress kids imaginations, by telling them “to stop imagining things” we will have a very boring, uneventful future. If we as guides, tell kids that “monsters don’t exist” and they are experiencing their very own monsters, the kids will disbelieve their own feelings, experiences and imagination. I believe that “Monsters” should be considered just like dreams and be dissected instead of disregarded. I believe that kids should be listened to instead of dismissed, all we need to do, is take the time to listen.
Firstly, I would like to whole heartedly thank, the Principal and Teachers, especially Miss Geihe, for giving me the opportunity to introduce ourselves and I love that you are all open to experiencing new ways of thinking and that you are all doing such an incredibly important task, of raising well rounded, leaders of the future. Secondly, I would like to express my gratitude, to the beautiful kids at Lismore Public School, for such an inspiring day. Thank you all for being so wonderful!