"How big is baby? So big!"

We all want to know if how big we feel matches how big we look. That's the reason for all those newspaper comics and late-show monologues about whether this dress "Makes me look fat?"

My art students are delighted with our trace-around project. They get to see evidence of how big they really are, and then paint their paper twin.

It's been a few years since I tried this project. My current teaching arrangement doesn't have the big drying space that makes it feasible. I'm trying to work around the logistics problems because the life-size project is such a hoot!

The youngest group of preschoolers listened to the classic 1944 picture book by Marie Hall Ets, In the Forest. I'm sad that wearing a folded newspaper hat and imagining a parade of animals in the forest is too low-tech for children now. Will Peekaboo be the next to fall? When I am in charge of the world these things will be preserved as the Yellowstones of children's literature.

Two old-time (ancient Twentieth century) activities helped me understand my childhood stature. The first was the annual class photo shoot. You could always find me in the "short row".

The second activity was having my foot measured on the Braddock Device at our shoe store, Brady's Juvenile Shoes. I believed that Prince Charming traveled about the countryside measuring all the female feet using just such a device to find his Cinderella.

The kids love this book about life-size animals. Look for it at your library (even if you are a grown-up!)

© 2010 Nancy L. Ruder

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