The Magic in Children’s Books: Junie B. Jones

By Kylie Widseth

“My name is Junie B. Jones. The B stands for Beatrice. Except I don’t like Beatrice. I just like B and that’s all. “

Just hearing that intro from almost every Junie B. Jones book makes me happy.

I chose to read Cheater Pants by Barbara Park because I think the lessons in this story can still relate to adults. Even in our daily lives we are faced with decisions of whether to “cheat” on something.

shutterstock_365175962Junie B. Jones was the first book character I ever loved. I related to Junie B. Jones because I was a lot like her. My mom raised me to be sassy, speak my mind, and stand up for myself. I’m sure my mom is reading this and hating that I’ve even said that. (Sorry Mom, but thank you for letting me by my own person.) Junie B. Jones is so much like me because she embodies a lot of those same qualities; she speaks her mind and is as sassy as ever.

Not only was I already like Junie B. Jones, but she also influenced me in so many ways. That dreadful day that I was told in 2nd grade that I needed glasses, I picked out some purple frames because Junie B. Jones had purple glasses. My favorite color was purple partly because of Junie B. Jones. So thank you to Junie B. for making the idea of becoming a “four-eyed freak” a little less scary. I would argue that the similarities didn’t actually stop there; I even have brown hair and blue eyes, just like Junie B. Jones.

Reading this book now was genuinely such a delight because I remembered a lot of her turns of phrase that she used. I found myself giggling so much because her style and her humor is still something I can relate to. My favorite quote from this particular book was, “This is the whole dumb thing with school. One minute you’re all joyful and happy. And the next minute, the joy gets flushed right out of you.” Preach the truth, Junie B., preach.

This book, as you can imagine by the title, teaches a valuable lesson that cheating is not good, cheating is bad. It’s a pretty obvious lesson but also a pretty vital lesson to teach to young children, and as I said earlier, even adults. Junie B. Jones learns that even copying someone’s homework is still considered cheating; she thinks that it’s only called cheating if it’s on a test. These are even things that we contemplate, it’s not cheating because this particular thing doesn’t matter much. But as Junie B. shows, but cheating in all types, big or small, is still cheating.

shutterstock_175520738.jpg

Rereading a favorite childhood book is one of my favorite things I’ve ever done. It’s something that I think everyone should do! My friends may have judged me when I said I was reading Junie B. Jones, but then I got to tell them it was for work. But I also think that you shouldn’t have to be rereading a favorite book for any particular reason. If you can reread a favorite book now without being judged, why can’t we all just reread our favorite childhood book and be captured in that magical essence once again?

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s