Robby's reading has drastically improved during the past few months. While I wouldn't classify him as a bookworm, he is learning that books open up the world to a wealth of information. With a strong preference for non-fiction, he has already exhausted his school's library of every available turtle and reptile book. Although turtles remain his obvious preference, he has expanded (no doubt out of necessity) his reading interests to include sharks and sea life.
A few weeks ago I picked up Robby from school and he began to pepper me with questions about Mrs. Sager's diving experiences. Mrs. Sager is a family friend who taught with my Mom for years. She is also an experienced scuba diver with a wealth of experience and wonderful stories to share. She taught Robby how to snorkel before our trip to Atlantis, and the two often talk about the tropical fish she has seen during her dives.
On this occasion, Robby wasn't interested in general diving information or experiences. Specifically, he wanted to know if she has ever been in a cage surrounded by sharks. (Apparently he read a book about a marine scientist studying sharks.) I passed the question along to my Mom who sees her on a regular basis, and we received a message that she has swum with sharks but was not in a cage. Robby was duly impressed!
This past weekend Robby was surprised with an unexpected gift from Mrs. Sager and her sister. They had compiled a collection of shark's teeth for him, many prehistoric, along with a classification guide. He was excited to see the variety of teeth but became utterly fascinated when he realized that some came from sharks that swam during the time of the dinosaurs. Upon learning that information, there was no doubt that the teeth, along with the chart, were going to be taken to school to show his classmates.
Monday morning, Robby triumphantly walked into his school with the little box of shark teeth, and
Of course, my little talker also took the opportunity to tell his teacher all about Mrs. Sager, her diving experiences and especially about her swimming pool. He proudly explained that she was a friend of Nana's (my Mom) and she has a swimming pool. Her pool is just like the pools that they probably have in heaven, except that it is in Pennsylvania. His teacher listened patiently as she swiftly redirected Robby's conversation back to the teeth. Yet again, I made a mental note to be careful what I say in front of Robby because he is bound to remember and repeat it.
Robby offered to research to determine during which period of the dinosaur era the various sharks lived. She agreed that a shark timeline would be a great project and promised to help him research further. Before Robby left for his classroom, his teacher remarked that he always brings in the most interesting items to show his friends. He coyly smiled and said, "Well, that's how I roll."
Robby has been elevated to hero du jour by sharing his rare sharks teeth with his classmates. I understand that he allowed each friend to look at them and that they have been diligently working on the timeline. I also learned that he was vigilant about keeping track of each tooth, carefully putting each back in the little box after it was examined. His new mantra has become, "These teeth were around when the dinosaurs were here. That's a really long time, and I'm not going to lose them on my watch."