There are more illustrated versions of Clement C. Moore’s beloved The Night Before Christmas than dishonest politicians in Washington; but Bruce Whatley‘s is my favorite.
Whatley obviously did his research when he placed this masterpiece back in Moore’s 1820s context. His attention to historic detail, from the house’s weathered wood board siding to the simplicity of the toys, paired to this classic poem transports the reader to a long lost (and often romanticized) era.
This could be the launching point to talk about how life was radically different 200ish years ago (among a myriad of other curricular objectives). But I prefer not to dissect every piece of literature in my class. So, on the afternoon before Christmas break, I’m going to read aloud for the love of literature.