Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Performance Pressure!

Some kids are born performers while some are born bathroom performers! Some love to hog the limelight while some love to stay away from it! Whether they love to entertain others or only themselves, one thing is for sure – you can’t force them to be what they don’t want to be – at least not when they are kids!:-) Abhay falls somewhere in between and my wanting him to sing or perform never coincides with his desire to show off! Though I have never been those moms who love to show off their kid’s talents, there have been times when I have hoped my  five year old obliges when someone asks him to sing a nursery rhyme. Instead, he pretends as if he has never heard Twinkle Twinkle Little Star! But when he is all alone playing with his legos, or laying his hot wheels tracks, he  just doesn’t stop singing!! Or his performances are reserved for his “circle” of friends, which sometimes excludes even his parents! I guess he is shy or gets conscious in the presence of others but is most comfortable when all by himself or is amidst his close family. Similarly, the other day, when asked to sing a song by a music teacher in whose class I had planned to enroll him, Abhay refused to even open his mouth! But when we got back home, he went straight up to his room and began to play while singing his own cover version of “Wanna be my chammak challo”!

Today we read about one such chameleon who has a mind of her own and cannot change colors like a chameleon is supposed to! “Colour Colour Kamini” by Radhika Chadha and pictures by Priya Kuriyan is another story revolving around Baby Bahadur and his friends. Kamini, the chameleon has a minor problem, she cannot perform her color changing trick in front of her teacher Kapila aunty whereas she manages to do just fine when all alone or with her best friend Bahadur. So in the Basic Colors class, when all the students are instructed to match the color of a tree branch, Kamini gets excited and goes pink, indigo, red, purple and orange, as Kapila aunty stands horrified at Kamini’s mutli-color flashing predicament! Kamini cannot stand the prospect of falling behind her other classmates as they move on to the next class - spots and stripes and seeks the help of Baby Bahadur.  Pondering over how to help his friend, Baby Bahadur goes home to find his Anna and Akka (brother and sister) being pulled up by Kapila aunty for stomping around the banana patch where the chameleons were color matching. As it turned out that Anna and Akka could not spot the color changing chameleons, Bahadur hits upon an idea – to use Colour Colour Kamini’s unique quality to warn the elephant teenagers of a chameleon class in progress. So it not only allows banana lovers a peaceful use of the banana patch but also helps Kamini stay close to her friends while keeping them safe from the meddlesome intruders! Needless to mention, any book from the Baby Bahadur series is a delight to read! Abhay has always been fascinated by the names of the characters; Last time it was Ritu the rabbit who had him fondly remember his friend from Portland and this time around it was Kabir, the chameleon who reminded him of my friend’s son.  Overall, a great read if you have a shy little one lurking around your house! J

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