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Fox in Socks

Fox in Socks


by Dr. Seuss

Fox in Socks Meaning

What is this book really about?

Sometimes Seuss can be sneaky with what his books are really about. Is One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish just about silly rhymes or is it about exploring a child's sense of wonder? Are the Sneetches just pot-bellied birds, or are they a warning against prejudice and capitalism? Thankfully, Seuss takes the guesswork out of Fox in Socks.

Both Fox and Knox refer to their word-bending endeavors as a "game" (31.4, 58.2), and that's exactly what Fox in Socks is really about: making language and reading a game. The tongue twisters on the page are meant to challenge the reader while also being enjoyable, and you only get better as you play.

As a bonus, Fox in Socks can be played by yourself or with your family and friends. Here are a couple of our favorite modes of play:

  • High Score Mode: There are fifty-eight stanzas in the book. For every stanza your tongue trips up on, subtract one point. Go for broke, and while you're at it, the high score.
  • Hard Mode: There are 244 lines in the poem. Trust us; we counted. Subtract one point per messed up line, and good luck.
  • The Speed Run: The whole book, no mess ups, and as fast as you can. Keep ice water on standby for sprained tongues.
  • Two-player Mode: Our personal favorite at the Shmoop office. Two people read together. When one messes up, the other takes over. The person who reads the most wins.
  • Hot Potato Mode: Just like two-player mode, only the person to reach the end is declared the winner.
  • Free Play Option: Another two-player mode, only you don't bother keeping score. The readers just have fun exploring the wacky images and rhymes. Everybody wins.

It's the perfect two-for-oner: family game night and book reading. Better still, the players, erm, readers grow as they read. The book helps improve reading-aloud skills—Fox in Socks, by the by, should always be read aloud. It stretches out tongue muscles and flexes imaginations with its zany illustrations and words. It also helps shy readers overcome their fear of reading "the right way" because everybody messes up when reading this book. Messing up is half the fun, and making mistakes is the only way to learn.

In short, reading can be just as fun as playing a game. Why? Because, in its own right, reading is play, and Fox and Socks demonstrates this perfectly.

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