Author: Jerdine Nolen Illustrator: Elise Primavera Publisher: Harcourt, 1998 Age: 4-8 Themes: dragons, farm life, friendship Opening: Pa didn’t know a thing about raising dragons.He raised corn and peas and barley and whet. He raised sheep and cows and pigs and chickens. He raised just about everything we needed for life on our farm, but he didn’t know a thing about raising dragons.
Summary: (from my library catalog) A farmer’s young daughter shares numerous adventures with the dragon that she raises from infancy.
I like this book because: of the way Nolen tells a story. She has the reader believing everything without an ounce of doubt, and identifying with the main character and her firm confidence in her own abilities. Pure magic and an absolute joy to read aloud! Once upon a time I was a parent of young children, and I was reluctant to read long stories to my kids at the end of the day. I realize now I cheated myself from discovering some of the best writing. Don’t miss out. Don’t be a Lazy Julie!
Resources/activities: research all the creatures that are oviparous; compare the shape, color and sizes of eggs; talk about what to do if you should find one in the wild; read more books by Jerdine Nolen!
For more Perfect Picture Book Friday picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.
Author/Illustrator: Alice and Martin Provensen Publisher: Random House, 1974 Ages: 3-8yrs Themes: farm animals, domestic animals, farm life Opening:Who lives at Maple Hill Farm? Summary: (from Amazon) Two dogs, five horses, a pig, some geese, lots of chickens, a few cows, a few goats, several sheep, and four special cats — these are the animals at Maple Hill Farm.
With simple text that is both affectionate and wry, and irresistible illustrations that burst with personality, Alice and Martin Provensen bring their barnyard friends to life for the delight of animal lovers both young and old.
I like this book because: this picture book tells all about farm life, even without the words and I appreciate the range of children that can enjoy this – even on their own. The well designed spreads pictures are humorous yet honest – maybe that’s what makes them so timeless.
Robyn and Susanna?
Resources/activities: sing Old MacDonald; list all the farm animals you can think of and talk about why they might be kept on a farm (other than sheer cuteness!); visit a farm, preferably a working farm. My city of choice, Fort Collins, CO, has one that serves ‘as an educational and interactive experience for residents and visitors’, where one ‘can learn more about the industry that shaped this region, have interactive, hands-on farm fun, and introduce your child to agriculture and farm life while visiting’ – for more info click HERE
For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.