An assignment for his kindergarten art class. "Put some symbols in and on a box that stand for things you like or aspects of your personality." I actually wasn't looking forward to this - how do I explain "symbols" to a five year old?
Well, he didn't have any trouble with the concept. Right off, he pointed to my arm and explained to me that my tattoo was a symbol. And how.
Here are the things that he drew on the outside of the box (see if you can find them all):
- "Your tattoo!" "Yes but that's a symbol for me - what does it mean about you?" "It's a symbol that I like my mom!"
- "a monster in its nest with its egg"
- "the monster's teeny tiny baby sister"
- "a Tyrannosaurus rex that is so big it doesn't even fit on the box and it ate the monster bug and the gigantic snake"
- a gigantic snake
- a monster bug
Inside, he put these things:
- "sidewalk chalk, because I love drawing on the sidewalk."
- "this brown crayon shows that I love drawing and also my favorite color is brown."
- "a puzzle piece because I love doin puzzles, and this puzzle is a school bus and that is a symbol of I love school!"
- "this is from my mom's floaty pen collection and it's the Statue of Liverdy because New York City is my favorite city and also I was even born there!"
- "my library card because I love books!"
- "pirate booty because I love playing like I'm a pirate"
- "a jellyfish because my favorite place to go on vacation is... the beach!"
- "this shows I love RACIN'!"
- "I will draw the S and you help me with the spiderweb to show that I love books and especially the Spiderwick book that Alex gave me for my birthday."
- "my favorite holiday is Halloween"
- "I love dinosaurs"
Then we went through my box of postcards I've collected over the years - he was very concerned that he hadn't found a symbol of rock'n'roll.
1. First one he saw that spoke to him was the Sandy Skoglund installation of fish in a blue room.
"Wow this is cool! Can I have this one?"
"What does it say about you?"
"It says that I looooove... SALMON!"
2. Next he saw a card listing the traits of those born in the Year of the Snake. Like me. And him.
He liked it because he likes snakes. Also, he knew it was Chinese, because of the shape of the white space (yeah, I think he gets symbols), so he was all excited that it was also a symbol that he likes Chinese food.
3. While were looking at the postcards, Mr 3 got in on the action and drew his letter on the lid. Big Man said that was ok, it was a symbol that he has a brother. Not committing to more than that.
4. We went through the entire set of these planet postcards, but he picked Pluto because of the three-eyed cartoon alien. "This says that I like cartoon drawings and also that I like outer space and my room is decorated like outer space."
5. He was still concerned about the rock'n'roll. We got to that picture of Patti Smith with the flames behind her and the shirt half off and I had a little moment - that picture is maybe TOO rock'n'roll for Kindergarten. But he passed right by it and pounced on this picture of Lou Reed. So we played him the live version of Sweet Jane and he decided that Lou Reed was rock'n'roll enough for him.