Organizational Skills (Two-Year-Old Version)

pink-shoes.jpgEleanor LOVES preschool. Even though we are almost halfway through the school year, she still gives an excited little jump whenever we tell her that she’s going. She loves her teacher, loves to play with the preschool toys, and she especially loves her lunchbox.

“I get to go to preschool?” she squeals. “With my lunchbox?” Oh, the glee.

But do you know what? It looks like some of that preschool goodness is rubbing off on the girl. Owing to the fastidiousness of the cubby-and-hook coat storage system at school, Ella has become a stickler for stowing her stuff at home.

“I’m taking off my cooooooat!” she yells as she marches into the house. “I’m gonna hang it uuuuuuuuup!”

The problem is that she doesn’t have the fine motor skills to open the coat closet. So she usually just hangs it on the doorknob. Fine by me. But today . . .

“I’m done hanging up my coooooat,” she sang across the house. “Now can I hang up my shoes?”


“You can take them off if you want,” I reply. “There’s a tray in the kitchen you can put them on.”

“No, I want to HANG THEM UP,” she replies stoutly. I hear the scritch-scritch sound of Velcro shoe-straps, and when I enter the living room a few minutes later I find — yes — a shoe hanging from the closet doorknob. As in, the doorknob is inside the shoe . . . but there’s just one of them. I glance around on the floor for its mate, but there’s none to be seen. I figure it will show up sooner or later and go back to the kitchen.

Where, to my surprise, I find another shoe — hanging on the basement door’s knob.


Baby Shoes by Dashka Slater, illus. Hiroe Nakata.  The premise of this cutie is this: Mom gets Baby some new shoes that are sparkling white. However, through the course of the day, the shoes get soiled in a variety of ways — brown mud, red paint, green grass stains — until they resemble a rainbow. While I have to wonder at the wisdom of buying a toddler white anything, there’s no denying the fun to be found in this book’s bouncy story.

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