I was browsing through books in the Half-Price Bookstore and came across this book, The Wishing Chair.  I was not familiar with the author.  Reading the book jacket and then reading part of the text, I realized that this book would be good mentor text with gathering ideas for writing.  Often children do not think about using their daydreams as possible writing ideas.  I also wanted to show that you can find great ideas in most any book.

The Wishing Chair is Rick Dupre’s first book (1993).  He shares on the book jacket that he had a wishing place as a child.  He spent time pretending with his siblings, the basis for the book.

Young boy, Eldon, spends time with his grandmother.  For entertainment, Eldon fantasizes.  He fantasizes that the yard is a jungle in the African safari, exploring animals.  Inside the house, Eldon fantasizes that the green cushions become boats in the alligator infested swamp.  What fun!

Grandma is always around, sewing, singing, or sharing stories.  She would have Eldon sit in the wishing chair.  In the wishing chair, Eldon would hear her stories about famous African-Americans and dream about making a difference.

Later in life, when Grandma is moving from her house, Eldon stops to reflect on his childhood memories.  He realizes these African-Americans are heroes, paving the way for his dreams of college and a career.

Savorings for reading and in writing for The Wishing Chair:

  • Imagination – “Granny’s yard was perfect for a game of Captain Explorer.”
  • Sensory Setting – “Teh smell of her peonies was sweet in the heavy summer air.
  • Passage of Time – “As Eldon grew older,…
  • Simile – “a hug with her round warm -as-a-quilt arms
  • Family Stories – “Granny’s little house was overflowing with wonderful memories.”
  • Day Dreams – ideas for writing
  • Civil Rights Movement – brief history of famous African-Americans

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