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How not to read a fairy tale

After today’s earlier post I was browsing the web for some more Grimm news, when I came across this site. This is what happens when professionals get involved in teaching literature to children. Truly, I think the temptation is irreistable. Please don’t teach this way. Maybe, if you have to feel grown up while you teach, do it in fourth grade. But why you’d want to I’m not sure.

Here’s one that should be tried only by those who have mature judgment and don’t think little kids can handle complicated moral debates. To debate whether a fairy tale character should have done something generally questionable is different from debating whether the child ever should. In other words, the discussion should stay in the realm of the particular: whether this character should have done this act; not wander into the realm of the abstract: whether it is ethical to sometimes deceive.

I think she’s a little naive about children’s moral capacity and the effects of premature abstraction, but am subject to correction. What do you think?

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