The Green Door
Written and illustrated by: Rinat Hoffer
I dip my feet into the sea of wait
Attach a bead to my rod instead of bait
Think of an idea, immersed in ideation
Delving deeper and deeper into my imagination
Beloved Israeli children’s books author, Rinat Hoffer, beckons readers to open the Green Door and enter a rich world where imagination and reality have blended into one another. In this realm, comprised of both songs and illustrations, they will encounter dwarves and cats, landscapes and feelings, friends and boredom, even a Porkupine (ציפלוד).
Unlike stories, poem collections may be read in various ways. You could choose to read just one or two poems at a time, or read them all; you could read them in any order you like, or read them over and over again, focusing on different issues each time. Poetry collections are a wonderful opportunity for discussions with our children. They allow us to sit down with them, asking them how they feel and what they think. Poems can prompt us to discover what goes on in our children’s world, and share our experiences, feelings and childhood memories with them.
Enjoy reading and discussing this book together!
Proposed Family Activities:
- You may want to sit comfortably and read these poems together. Which of them are your favorites? And which are your child’s? do you both like the same ones? And what about the characters, with which of them did you identify? Did these poems remind you of any past experiences you may have had?
- Perhaps you would enjoy looking for the various clocks in the illustrations. Some of them are real and hanging on a wall, while others are imaginary, appearing as a girl’s curls or as onion bulbs. When do the clocks show the time, and when are they an indication of time going by? Have you or your child ever felt that time was standing still? And when does it “fly” and disappear before you realize it?
- Even “small”, routine, day-to-day moments can turn into a poem, drawing, or story. Perhaps you and your child could select such a moment in the day you have just had, discuss it, and create something by which to depict it.
- Rinat Hoffer often writes and draws about the writing and illustrating experience. You may want to look through the book together, and find the pencils in the illustrations. Have you found the one that resembles a magic wand? Or the one that looks like a key? How about the vase in which pencils make up a colorful, flowering plant? There are others too, see if you can find them all.
- You may enjoy discussing the magic of creating, and what you would do if you had such a magic pencil.
- The illustrations in this book combine printed letters such as the ones you might find in newspapers with pages from old books. You may want to create a collage with your child from printed documents you no longer need or old newspapers. What emerges from such a combination?
- Rinat Hoffer has written many other stories and poems, such as Hanan the Gardener (חנן הגנן), Somebody (מישו), and Purple Monster (מפלצת סגולה). You may want to look for them at the library or at home, and read them together too.