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What My 3 Year Old Knows About Liquor: Our Film & Lit Course Gone Wrong and Hilarious.

So the Hawkins Academy (our official homeschool name) has a course called Film & Lit. We read good books, watch the associated movie, then compare, contrast & critique. This course came about as a compromise between my husband and I. I am a proud bookworm and he, a movie connoisseur. Our deal is that he cannot show them any movies or series before we have read the titles in entirety.

This year we are setting out to read J.R.R. Tolkien’s Hobbit and Lord of the Rings series. We hope to sit and watch all of the movies at the end of the year. (At the rate we are going though, it looks like we will finish by summer. Those books are so difficult to put down.) So far we have gone through the entire Lion, Witch & Wardrobe series, Matilda, Charlotte's Web, Anne of Green Gables et al., Mary Poppins, and Charlie & the Chocolate Factory.

When it came time to watch a movie for the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, we chose the 1971 version (Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory) because:

1) Gene Wilder.

2) Tim Burton creeps me out.

3) Nostalgia.

4) Better Oompaloompahs. (though less true to the book's description)

5) Better music. "I want it now!" is kind of my jam) Varuka was a terror but she ended up with such a great tune. It seems like villains have better songwriting skills ( See: Scar, Ursula, Gaston) But I digress.

6) It appeared to be more wholesome

Flash forward to a morning time breakfast conversation. After a walk in the cool weather my girls and I are chowing down on cheesy grits and my 8 year old comments on how it is warming her up.

To which my youngest responds, "Yeah, you know what Willy Wonka said. 'Liquor is quicker!'"


So, a couple of things to clear up are:

1. He did say that.

2. I totally missed that as a child.

3. I am so impressed that she caught that as a child.

4. She has no idea what liquor is. It may as well be cheesy grits.

5. This is a teachable moment.

I don’t mean that I taught my girls anything from this interaction. Actually, I somehow managed to avoid explaining what liquor was. Instead, the experience made me more aware of how well children to pay attention to what is put before their eyes and in their ears. I don’t believe any real harm was done in this case. I know she didn’t know what she was saying. It was just a fun rhyme to her.

It was a reminder to me though. Little ones watch and listen closely. They are trying to make connections and grasp at what is around them. How humbling to be the ones to give them their first glimpses of the world! I laughed that morning. I really did. Later though, as I thought about the sweetness in her voice as she shared her “revelation,’ the weight of my role as her parent became all the more clear to me.

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