I think I can….I can…I can. The values of today as well as yesteryear have not changed. Because the boys and girls are still reading the little engine that could. Some are still reading the original that was published in 1930 stressing optimism and hard work.
This was also a book that encouraged me to become a better reader. Reading was a struggle in first and second grades but it was the little engine that could that told me I could do this too. And I did…I did.
I began to think about the little engine while watching a student in my class follow the words being read out loud on his starfall iPad reading app. But this was a tale of two little engines that together, they could do it. The book talks about the little red engine who trys and trys while a similar blue little engine helps push the cars of toys over the mountain. Other engines also pass them by. This version focuses on true teamwork.
The student was excited about the story adding the types of childhood inflection repeating words as I did decades ago. He read it over and over in class. The same week that I noticed him become entranced in little engines, another student selected a book from the wide variety in the classroom. The original Little Engine that could.
And she did the same with the small, hard copy book. She decided to read it outloud while others listened. Later that day we had an assembly with a few members from the Kane county cougar team supporting are reading program. Once again, one baseball player said that his favorite book was …guess what? Three times. … a charm.
So, of course, after school that same day, I went to the community library. I had saved many of my childhood favorites in a bookcase at home but not this one. There were many editions of the book as I discovered through the digital card catalog including , a DVD, and a movie. But copies were checked out and the librarian said that it was always like that with The Little Engine That Could. Would I like The Little Engine That Could Gets a Check Up?
No, that is fine. I will just have the students read to me the copies at the school I assist, whenever I need to be reminded of my childhood..my beginnings of academic success. Whenever I need to know,today, that I still can!