Lucy’s Book Club – Waiting is Not Easy by Mo Willems
Gerald and Piggie are best friends.In Waiting Is Not Easy!, Piggie has a surprise for Gerald, but he is going to have to wait and wait, and then wait some more until he can find out what it is. Gerald groans, complains some, and almost decides not to wait, but he hangs on and experiences the lovely surprise at the end – a beautiful starry night.
How does“Waiting is Not Easy” support the emotional development of young children?
Waiting can be so hard (especially this time of year with holidays galore). Children can readily empathize with Gerald as he tries so hard to patiently wait for Piggie’s surprise.
Sometimes he is able to be patient and calm, but sometimes he is not. Waiting requires self-control and children can certainly experience a myriad of emotions as they wait; frustration, anger, fear of the unknown, excitement, worry etc. Piggie must also have feelings about the waiting situation he has created. Can he keep a secret? Does he feel bad that Gerald is finding it so hard to wait? This book presents very relevant and familiar topics that a teacher or a parent can explore with children.
Reading“Waiting is Not Easy” to a group of children: engaging and activating children throughout the story: As you turn each page, see if children can guess what Piggie wants Gerald to wait for. You can even keep a running list. Call attention to Piggie’s and Gerald’s facial expressions and how they change as the story progresses (Gerald’s expressions vary greatly from excitement to frustration, to anguish, to worry). Help children make a list of the things that they have to wait for and discuss with them how they feel if they have to wait. What kinds of things/events are easier to wait for? Harder?
Suggested Activities For “Waiting is Not Easy”
What is Your Favorite?
Play the favorites game. Take turns naming categories like snacks, TV shows, playground games, books, ice cream flavors, etc. and share your favorites. You can also ask each other questions like, “If you had to pick between chips and pretzels, which snack would you pick?” You can also add humor and be creative with your questions, such as, “If you had to be an animal, which animal would you be?
Tell a Story
Help children expand their creativity and storytelling skills. Choose a random photo of a place, person or animal from a magazine or an advertisement flyer. Together, take turns to create a story about the picture that has been chosen. You can follow-up by putting your story into book form (paper and a stapler) and then illustrating it.
About Lucy’s Book Club
A child’s ability to communicate, develop relationships, resolve con icts, and cope with the challenges of everyday life emerges over time. Reading together is one way to explore these topics with children. Lucy’s Book Club (LBC) supports healthy social and emotional development and early literacy skills, while promoting imaginative play, creative thinking, problem solving, and self-regulation skills.
LBC provides age-appropriate literature, training, and support for early childhood teachers serving low- to moderate-income children in Wake, John- ston, and Durham counties. Ten or more centers per year are selected as LBC partners and receive up to three LBC selections per month.