Speaking of Stupid...
Mags has a new favorite things! And its name is... chapter books!
More specifically, its name is Junie B. Jones, the book series. I've managed to score most of the 20+ book set from the thrift store over the months - starting when she was, oh, still a babe in arms - 'cause they looked like a good bet. At the beginning of the series, we meet Junie, who is just starting kindergarten. It seemed like a good idea.
And Mags LOVES them! They don't have a lot of pictures, but she has been totally sucked into them. Husband and I have read and reread the first two 80+ page books at least three times each this weekend alone. Mags demands that we read nothing else. She giggles and chortles and squeals with laughter through the whole thing. Because...
Junie B. Jones is filled with Bad Words. Yes, our 5 year old heroine has got a bit of a bad attitude, and loves using words like 'stupid' and 'dumb' and 'I hate...'. Granted, she is not hurtling epitaphs and racial slurs, nor do I think its terribly off base for the author to assume kids this age like to use those kinds of words. But if those are the kinds of words that really aren't allowed in your house, then we've got a bit of a conundrum. Because suddenly these ARE the kinds of words that are being used in our house, ya dig?
We've had to have several talks with Mags already about the frequency with which these words are now being used by our own Junie imposter. And I'm torn - Mags has always enjoyed book time, but has never absolutely demanded that we read to her this much. Plus she's sitting through 80+ page books (granted, double spaced, but still!) which has got to be good practice for really getting into reading on her own and more chapter books, and I figure exposure to a kindergarten setting through boks can only help prepare her for the real thing which'll be starting this fall (gulp!) But really, she's latched onto the whole negative 5 year old stereotype pretty strongly.
I'm hoping if Husband and I keep explaining that its not ok to use those words like that with us and that Junie does/says a bunch of things that are funny in the books but maybe not so nice in real life that this will eventually calm down and be less of a Big Deal. I really want Mags to continue to enjoy books, and I don't want to have to tack a lecture onto the end of each one, but if this keeps going, I may have to give the Junie B. books a Time Out.