Skip to main content

Storytime Bilingüe featuring “Oh the Places You'll Go”

Although it was written just about 30 years ago now, Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss, reaches the best-seller list every year right around graduation time. It's no surprise, because the children's story tells the archetypal truths of growing up, moving out, and embarking upon life's journey on your own. It depicts both the highs and the lows of coming of age, and as children love it for its playful images, meter and rhyme, and nonsense words, adults enjoy it just as much, because even after countless reads, it still pulls on the heartstrings.

So when Audelina, the first emerging bilingual I raised, came by after her graduation ceremony in her cap and gown to show off her diploma, I had to record a bilingual story time of her reading this story to Maya and Mateo. 

I actually received this copy of the book from my youth pastor at Ojai Presbyterian Church when I graduate from high school in 2005. All of my friends in the youth group signed it, and when I was a classroom teacher, I used to read it to my students at the end of each school year. Now I feel like I've come full circle, listening to my first adoptive daughter on her graduation day read it to my babies. And I also made sure to give Audelina a new copy of her own, so that she can read it with her own son.

Six years ago, right after we had married and bought a house, my husband, Francisco, and I adopted his youngest half-siblings, Audelina and her older brother, Justo, from Guatemala. They had lost both of their parents, and so as we struggled to start a biological family of our own, we thrust ourselves into a parenting crash-course as we became adoptive parents to two teenagers. They arrived in the US and knew barely any English, so we enrolled them in school, and every day after school I'd work with them as they completed their homework at the kitchen table, helping their language skills develop, and both of them learned English fluently in just two years! Both became permanent legal residents, got their drivers license, got jobs, and slowly acclimated to their new identities as Guatemalan immigrants. Justo graduated from high school in 2018 and now Audelina also has her diploma. 

These two young people have had to overcome so much so far, from losing their parents, immigrating to a new country, learning a new language, and finding their place and purpose in the world. I am so proud of their grit, tenacity, and the positivity with which they have faced any obstacle put in front of them.

Please join me in wishing Audelina a hearty congratulations on her accomplishment, and who knows all the places she will go!




Here's some photos of our graduate






And this is my precious copy of Oh, the Places You'll Go, autographed by all of my high school friends












Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Why We Don't Celebrate El Dia de los Muertos, either

El Dia de los Muertos, (The Day of the Dead) is often considered the Latin-American equivalent to Halloween, as it is a celebration that takes place every year on November 1st and 2nd throughout Latin America. But it actually has nothing to do with Halloween, and even pre-dates the Celtic Samhain, which is where our modern-day Halloween traditions come from.  The ancient indigenous Aztec people of Mexico celebrated the lives of past ancestors 3,000 years ago, and that month-long ritual was condensed into just a few days around the 20th century and is now known as the Day of the Dead. Today,  El Dia doe los Muertos is a time for Latinos to remember their dead loved ones and celebrate them, for it is believed that the souls of all people that have passed away return to Earth to check up on their families during this day.  But up until last night, I didn't believe El Dia de los Muertos was celebrated in Guatemala. Growing up in California with many Mexican-American friends, I was fami

Is 5 Little Monkeys Racist?

I’ve seen a lot of Tik Toks debunking children’s nursery rhymes lately. I have two toddlers, so now whenever I hear one of those rhymes, I think about their unsavory origins. But my son loves, loves Five Little Monkeys. He’s just learning to talk, and can almost say it by himself. I’ve thought about telling him to stop singing it since I learned in the original lyrics it’s not monkeys jumping on the bed, but he just gets so much joy from singing it as he jumps up and falls down, I thought... no harm, no foul, right? As long as he thinks the song is about monkeys, it’s ok.  Until my niece came over one day, and the three toddlers were playing on an old mattress we have on the living room floor for them to jump around on. My son asked me to sing 5 Little Monkeys. At first it was cute, because they literally were jumping on the bed, but then I took a good look at the three of them.  My kids are half-Guatemalan but very fair, like I am. Whereas my niece is half-black, and her skin happens

Why my Children Won't Believe in Santa Claus

Tonight all across the world, children are waiting for Santa with bated breath. They've made lists of wants and perhaps written letters addressed to the North Pole, baked cookies, set out milk, and dream of sugar plums dancing in their heads. But not my children. Well, maybe the dreaming of sugar plums part, but definitely not the white beard, chubby and plump right jolly old elf part. Even before my two biological children were born, my husband and I made the decision to not deceive them with the narrative of Santa, and in fact, not give them any gifts at all on Christmas. Intrigued? Infuriated? Here's why... My husband is from Guatemala and was raised Jehovah Witness , and one of the tenants of that faith is a strict adherence to not celebrating anything here on earth. This includes not celebrating Christmas or birthdays , and not giving gifts to commemorate these days. While he isn't a practicing Witness right now (instead we attend Celebration International Church