I recently read an article about the specific knowledge of first graders. It proceeded to give examples of 6 and 7 year-old kids recalling vast amounts of facts concerning specific subjects they adore/obsess over: insects, star wars, astronomy, UFOs…etc. For Liam and Burke it’s dinosaurs, snakes, and sharks. We have actually checked out every book our library owns about sharks (even the books on shark attacks) seeing that Liam plans to become a shark specialist of some sort later in life. He (in all seriousness) recently referred to his ribs as gills, and when departing from a friend leaving for Haiti, rather than a casual good-bye, Liam warns, “watch out for puff adders (a type of viper). Just don’t turn over any rocks. Okay?” I suppose if he knew anything about the social/living climate of Haiti, he would realize there are far worse things to watch for than snakes. So although my little men can recall thousands of obscure facts, they often lack context. This little fact of my own helps explain why on one hand they can classify and describe hundreds of species (even extinct ones) or have conversations including 4-5 syllable words, yet regularly fail to recall how to wipe their own butts, tie their shoes, or share with their younger sister.
Anyway, in order to feed the kids’ shark-loving appetites, we managed to squeeze in a little trip to the aquarium in Corpus while visiting some family. They all loved it. Burke’s face in the reflection of the shark tells more than I could possibly capture in words.