איזידורה איזה יום
תרגום לאנגלית של ההצעות להורים המודפסות בדפים האחרונים של הספר
Mrs. Biddlebox / Linda Smith (In Hebrew, “Isadora, What a Day”)
One morning Isadora Biddlebox awakens to a gloomy day that begins when she gets up on the wrong side of the bed. How do we respond to a bad day? Isadora teaches us all an original lesson in coping with bad moods and annoyances.
Isadora has a special way of coping with a gray morning: She gets up and does something, she takes initiative! She roars a roar and gets into a rhythm: She plucks, shakes, pushes, bakes and… eats everything (in a completely impolite manner). She is totally focused on changing the situation to which she awoke that morning. And in the end, she succeeds in changing her gloomy day into a sweet cake!
The story is rooted in the belief that each one of us has the innate ability for self-improvement and change. The story line encourages parents and children to discuss how they can change their moods and even transform reality by playing an active role and taking initiative. The parent suggestions are accompanied by the saying from the Book of Judges (Shoftim 14:14): “Out of the strong came forth sweetness” (Me’az yatza matok), illustrating how one can turn a seemingly negative condition into something positive.
“Me’az yatza matok” (Out of the strong came forth sweetness”)
Special emphasis and significance is placed in Jewish tradition upon a person’s ability to make personal choices throughout life. When Isadora awakens to a gray day, she chooses to change the circumstances of her day and transform it to something sweet.
“Me’az yatza matok” (Out of the strong came forth sweetness”) is an expression that describes the reversibility of difficult and irritating circumstances, and their transition into positive and strengthening ones. This colorful expression was coined by the hero Samson (Book of Judges, 14:14) and through it, he hinted at having found a (sweet) honeycomb inside the corpse of a lion. (In Hebrew one of the words for “strong” is “az”. Together with the word “me”, as in “Me’az”, the two words create “from the strong” or “out of the strong”, indicating the lion.)
Like Isadora, each one of us has the ability to choose to change the way we look at reality, and often transform even the reality itself!
- Many things cause Isadora’s morning to be gray and gloomy. Look at the illustrations. Search through them with your children and seek out all the things that are difficult for Isadora and that annoy her. You may ask your children: "Does it ever happen to you that you get up 'on the wrong side of the bed'? What is most difficult in this kind of morning? How do you respond when it happens?"
- Isadora isn’t alone during her day. A small goose accompanies her throughout the entire story! You may want to tell your children about the help that you receive from friends or from family members whenever you are in a bad mood, and suggest that they give thought to who accompanies and helps them to “sweeten” difficult situations.
- Isadora gathers up her gloomy morning and transforms the difficulties into a cake. You, too, can prepare a cake, and sweeten it even more by adding chocolate sprinkles, raisins or candies. You may want to relate to all the sweet additions as symbols of difficult things in the children’s lives, thereby demonstrating the expression “Me’az yatza matok” (Out of the strong came sweetness).
- Isadora is very active. She dances, plucks, bakes, and in the end eats the entire cake! You and your children are invited to make a list of ten ways to overcome a bad mood. You can prepare an illustrated list together and to hang it in a convenient place, as a reminder whenever the need arises.
- Little by little the illustrations in the story change from black to gray to pink. You might explain to the children the special symbolism of various colors. For example, the color pink symbolizes happiness and being positive. It would be fun to prepare some “rose-colored glasses” together from construction paper and rose-colored cellophane. Put them on and see how everything looks different!
- What do you think: Do you and your children think that eating the entire cake was a good idea?
- You and your children may want to invent a different ending for the story. Send your ideas to the Sifriyat Pijama website pj., and we'll post them on the site!