Friday, July 02, 2010

Calvin & Hobbes

Getting kids interested in reading can sometimes be difficult. It's a hard sell these days to convince the kids that books and their imagination could be just as stimulating as the latest version of Pokemon for their Nintendo DS. For those of you with young boys, I want to give you a heads up on a discovery I made. Calvin & Hobbes.  You may remember this dynamic duo from a decade or two ago-a precocious 7 year old and his stuffed tiger. 
Calvin & Hobbes were featured in just about every major newspaper (that is, if you can remember newspapers).  Well, it seems that even though the strip's creator never took to the mass merchandising route, he did release a number of books containing color and B&W strip collections. Nowadays you can get these at just about any used book or thrift store for like $2-$3. 
With my own minions I've found that the collections of Calvin & Hobbes strips resonate.  Many of the themes of a little boys life (homework, bullies, parents, little girls, teachers,playing outside) are covered in the pages of the strip. Not to mention Calvin's imaginary adventures as a spaceman, superhero,  or even a dinosaur - there is plenty there to stoke a young imagination. But be prepared for questions regarding complex ideologies and ethical quandaries- because as Calvin discovers and questions the idiosyncrasies of his world, so will your minions. But the thing is while they are doing this they are laughing, and more importantly-reading.