Written by Melcom Braganza
‘The Balloon’ published by NBT, a wordless book is one of the books that I have personally enjoyed while reading to the MOP junior Kids at our MOP sites in St Inez, Chimbel and Taleigao. Though it is a wordless book but it is a book that demands words from the readers as one looks and imagines the story.
The story starts off by this boy (which I named and linked to one of the children in the group such as Aman ( Taleigao), Daksh (St Inez ) who eventually sees a balloon on the road and decides to grab it and blow it up. As he blew the balloon up, the balloon lifts him off the ground and pushes him towards the sky. Was the boy scared? Was he excited? Did the balloon give him strength ? These are some of the questions that I ask as the boy is going higher and higher.
The balloon gave the boy a tour of a mountain, then of the trees, then of the seas, then eventually of a city. What happens to the boy ? How does he come back ? Does he come back ? More questions, more words and lot’s of things to think about.
Through out the story, the children listen, look, think and talk back to me and I am struck by how many words a wordless book can produce.
The imagination of the children on every page of the book was equally special. Every child’s comment on every page was different. To me the child is also having adventure with the boy and his balloon. For some children, the concept of floating above the earth was like watching a movie that was being shot down below and being on the edge of the world.
The most exciting part of the book is the extension activity, where every child is given a balloon to blow up and imagine their own adventure. The smile on their faces made me very happy. The rush to get their own balloons is another kind of adventure for the Resource Person! “ Sir !Give me, Sir, ‘mhaka di “
As the children leave the MOP site with their balloons and me with the book The Balloon, I imagine we are all on our own adventure.