Last year I mentioned the practice of Textual Intervention in this blog post.
This weekend my daughter said, while in a huffy mood, that she had nothing to play with. I told her to play with a story.
"You can't play with a story!" She said, in that tone of voice that conveys how hopelessly clueless a parent can be.
"Yes you can." I replied, then explained an abreviated version of this technique I had used as part of my English degree. She got it straight away. We took Goldilocks out of the three bears story and the wolf out of Little Red Riding Hood, both with surprisingly interesting results. Then we removed Hansel from Hansel and Gretel and added made up and extra chapter for a few of her favourite stories.
What did I learn from this? Don't patronise a six year old, play is good and academia has more uses than you might first think.