On the way to the Little Gym tonight, Jack was looking out the window for “a red light” in the sky. He said he was looking for Jupiter and Mars because they were red lights in the sky. We talked a little bit about how far away they were and how it was hard to see them (especially when it’s cloudy and you can’t even see the moon). Then he wanted to know if the big storm on Jupiter could come to Earth. I told him it wouldn’t come here because it would stay in Jupiter’s atmosphere. Then I asked him if there was anything living on any of the other planets. And he replied, “Well, I know that there are Martians on Mars because the Backyardigans were the first to discover them.” All the scientists can do all their research and send probes, but the Backyardigans actually take trips there (and it’s documented in a tv show) so that’s obviously the real truth.
Almost two years ago, I wrote a post called Picking Out a Book about how Jack picks out books for story time. He liked a book called 100 First Words that wasn’t really a story and was driving me a little crazy. It’s hard to believe that was only 2 years ago. He was only 2. I know the math is pretty simple, but the difference in two years is amazing.
His taste in books has changed a bit. This week when I asked him what books he wanted from the library he said, “Books about space and books about the ocean and all the things in the ocean. And do you think you could find me one about that red spot on Jupiter? I want to know more about that red spot. It’s a big storm and I want to know more about it.” No hesitation there.
When I brought the books home, he inspected them all to make sure that I got everything that he asked for. These are all from the non-fiction section of the children’s library. I also brought some Curious George books and a Dinosaur Train book but he said, “I don’t like Dinosaur Train anymore. Casey can have it. I don’t like Curious George either.” I think he has since changed his mind about George though because tonight George got curious at a chocolate factory.
I don’t remember learning about the solar system and the planets until somewhere around 4th grade. I made a paper mache sun and learned a lot about the sun at one point but I’ve forgotten it. I’m now relearning it all with Jack. Who’s 4. Crazy. I didn’t know (or recall) that Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune were gas planets. And space seems more vast and unfathomable to me now than it did at age 9.