This weekend, Mighty Media Press was invited to participate in Minnesota Public Radio's Rock the Cradle event, held at the Minneapolis Institute of Art. We sponsored an ongoing storytime, where our books were read aloud by the velvety voices of various talented DJ's from 89.3 The Current. Families from all over the greater Twin Cities area left a hectic world behind for some much needed quality time.
The result? A conversation.
Spark Curiosity With Discussion.
In Monster's newest adventure, Monster Needs Your Vote, he decides to run for President. However, Monster needs his best friend's help to decide what issues really need attention. After weighing the options, Monster focuses his campaign toward saving the local library, which he views as a societal need. Monster notices that this important need surpasses any desire for a longer summer or having dessert for dinner.
This lesson in deciphering the difference between Wants and Needs is the conversation we wanted to set alight amongst kids and their adults. Using Monster as our guide, our booth explored this difference. Our sign told our teeny visitors, "Needs are the things that keep you alive. Water is a need. So is air! Wants are things that might be fun to have, but you don’t need them to survive. Ice cream is a want. So is a skateboard!"
When confronted with big concepts like lots of toys, a safe place to sleep, trick-or-treating, and healthy foods, kids of all ages knew what really mattered right away. Though they may have needed each option read to them by an adult, toddlers with pint sized vocabularies astounded their parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles as they grasped the difference between really needing something and just wanting it.
On occasion, parents watched with wide eyes as their beloved tot delicately cast her vote for "Lots of Toys" as a Need. "Oh, we'll talk about that later," said one astounded father. "I don't think you really need your toys. Try again," emplored a caring mother. And just like that, the conversation was off and running.
We watched in awe as children pushed their parents to think differently. We smiled a thousand smiles as parents found those precious teachable moments where they pulled their kid aside to answer life's gaping questions.
Leaving Room For Fun.
As little feet shuffled down the line, kids were also able to take a photo with Monster, who teaches readers to think differently, try new things, and to stand up for what they believe in! Brothers, sisters, cousins, friends, adults, and even some of The Current's DJ's snuggled up next to Monster for a snapshot. Because what's a morning of analytical thinking and culture without a dash of silliness to follow?
Kids are never too young to grasp the tough stuff. At Mighty Media Press, we start the conversation. How will you add to it?
View our photo gallery from our Rock the Cradle shenanigans HERE.