Now I know why the version of the ant and grasshopper fable by Virgilio S. Almario and published by Adarna House is well recommended by some parents. This book is currently in LC’s activity corner and his most chosen book among the lot so I thought of giving it a review.
It starts out just like the other ant and grasshopper stories by describing the two characters.
Ito si masipag na Langgam.
Ito naman si makulit na Tipaklong.
Then it rains. That’s when the story takes a different twist.
I’m not going to be a spoiler and tell you how it went though. Rest assured, it was a good one. I appreciate how Virgilio S. Almario, true to his National Artist for Literature stature, gave more depth to the fable. When I first read it, I was all smiles at the end. I was very pleased! Sooo unlike what I felt after reading about Kas of Ang Barumbadong Bus.
I also like how Renato Gamos gave life to the story. The illustrations were simple and brightly colored. Not so artsy which makes it a good contrast to the poetry written in Filipino.
Having mentioned that, this book is not bilingual like other Adarna, Hiyas, Tahanan or Lampara books. This is written purely in Filipino. No English translations. That could be an issue to some families, but for us, it was a good teaching opportunity and practice on the Filipino language. LC has picked up new words we otherwise wouldn’t have used in our everyday conversations. And he loves saying tipaklong every time we read the story.
Adarna House recommends this book for children starting at ages 7 and 8. Our LC is only 2 and I admit it was a challenge explaining and processing the story to him. But at his age and his water spending sprees during bath times, it became a good story to tell him more about “sayang” and not being wasteful. It also gave more meaning why he has a piggy bank. (We’ve been telling him it’s for Jesus. That we’re saving coins in his piggy bank so he can give more during the Offertory part of the Mass.)
And even though it was not explicitly mentioned, the story also helped me differentiate to LC bagyo (storm), ulan (rain) and ambon (drizzle). But after several discussion, I think he still hasn’t understood it yet. We still “argue” about ambon and ulan. Just recently, we had this conversation:
(Seeing from the window that it began to drizzle, LC sings Incy Wincy Spider. Then he excitedly calls me.)
LC: Mama, rain!
Me: Ambon lang. Pag lumakas pa, yun ang ulan. (Just a drizzle. When it becomes stronger, then that’s rain.)
LC: Hindi ambon! ULAN! RAIN!!! (And he says this with big wide eyes. Pinandidilatan ako?! LOL)
One can find tips on how to save at the end of the book. I don’t think 7 or 8 year olds can already budget their money (Refer to #3). Can kids that young really do that now? Nevertheless, saving, knowing money management and being entrepreneurial at a young age is a great thing. And I can surely say the list serves as a good reminder to grown-ups as well.