Everybody Needs a Rock. Author Byrd Baylor published a book by that title in 1974, and the first and second graders have been listening to it this week during library time. The narrator speaks to the reader in a second person voice, sharing the ten rules she believes are important for finding a special rock. Her words and Peter Parnall's illustrations capture the listeners' attention so completely that they are rapt. I have found myself lost on the page at times because my own attention is focused on watching the children. When I finish, after the narrator says she is going to play a game that involves just herself and a rock, the children start raising their hands...to tell about their own rocks, of course.
Here are the ten rules in brief:
1. Find a good place (mountain is best)
2. Seek quiet and don't worry
3. Get close to the earth
4. Choose one not too big
5. Choose one not too small
6. Make sure it has the perfect feel
7. Make sure it has the perfect color
8. Look for a special shape
9. Sniff it (apparently kids are better at this one than adults)
10. Find it yourself
My favorite rocks are tiny, pea-sized Lake Superior Agate pieces that have been worn down by waves into almost perfect shapes. I get close to the earth when I sit on the shore to find them.