Author/Illustrator: Simon James Publisher: Candlewick Press, 2019 Age: 3-6 Themes: Companionship, dogs, pet ownership
Opening: see 2 images below.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Everyone knows that owners and their dogs belong together in a unique way. Polly belongs to Molly, Eric belongs to Derek, Berry belongs to Terry. But poor Mr. Scruff, alone in the rescue shelter, doesn’t belong to anyone. Then a boy named Jim walks in, and they seem to get along. Jim and Mr. Scruff don’t look anything alike, and their names certainly don’t rhyme, but they may end up belonging to each other just the same. From author-illustrator Simon James comes a warm, winning story about friendship and finding a home. A sweetly silly story of a little boy and a dog who make an unlikely (but perhaps perfect) pair.
Resources/activities: Talk about pets and why they might be a good fit for a child or their family, how the pet was chosen, or how otherwise ownership has come about; discuss what’s important about ownership, responsibilities, and care; discuss why a person or family might chose not to have a pet.
For more Perfect Picture Book Friday picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.
The PPBF series onSusanna Hill’s blog is still snoring the summer away, but I must share Perfect Picture Books as I come across them, at least on Fridays!
Author: Jim Averbeck Illustrator:Yasmeen Ismail Publisher: Atheneum, 2015 Ages: 4-8 Themes: pets, politeness, giraffes Opening:Sophia’s birthday was coming up, and she had five things on her mind – One True Desire and four problems. Summary: (from my library catalog)All Sophie wants for her birthday is a pet giraffe, but as she tries to convince different members of her rather complicated family to support her cause, each tells her she is using too many words until she finally hits on the perfectone. Includes glossary.
I like this book because: of big words and nimble, fluid illustrations! This may be a challenge for younger ears, but go ahead and challenge them! The text is dense and deep and the light and elegant illustrations compliment perfectly!
Resources/activities: Review the glossary, discuss the big words, and see if you can find more to add; discuss strategies and methods as well as manners to communicate with; list everyone’s One True Desire (for the day!)
For existing PPBF selections including resources and activities, go to Susanna Hill’s blog: HERE
Author/Illustrator: Benjamin Chaud (Engl. translation: Taylor Norman) Publisher: Chronicle Books, 2015 (orig. published: Adieu Chausette, hélium/Actes Sud, 2010) Ages: 4 and up Themes: pets, friendship, responsibility Opening:Floppy, that’s my rabbit. That’s his name because of his ears. They don’t stand up straight like other rabbits’. Summary: (from my library catalog) A boy feels that he is too old for his pet rabbit, so he tries to turn Floppy loose in the woods–but when he realizes that he really loves his pet, and returns for him, Floppy is nowhere to be found.
Why I like this book: I picked it up because of the book’s vertical format (8 x 0.5 x 12.5 inches) and the illustrator’s work (another PPBF pick of mine HERE). But at first I was not taken with the text – WHHAAAAH? But, I read on – so something must have been working because I am a tosser (over the shoulder but with a soft landing). If I am not grabbed in the first 2 pages, 3 max, the book is airborne. The illustrations invited me to keep going. but the last line on page 2 got me: “So I had to let him go.” Yikes! I had to follow the mc and find out how he planned to do this! When you’ve read it too let me know what you think. I fell, big time! A Kirkus review did not, and as with all books, it keeps me wondering about personal tastes and how we form opinions – too deep a topic for this recommendation though. Do give it a go!
Author/Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers Publisher: Philomel Books, 2012 Ages: 4-8yrs Themes: moose (or meese if you’re being silly), pets, ownership Opening:Wilfred owned a moose. Summary: (from my library catalog) A young boy learns that moose do not always follow the rules of proper pet behavior.
I like this book because: it got me. Some books just do that. Was it the wry humor, the fun character drawings, the use of existing landscape art in collage? Can’t quite pinpoint, but I keep coming back to this book.
Resources/activities: ask students what makes a suitable pet and discuss why some don’t; make collages with magazine pages of landscapes and drawn characters placed in them. For a GREAT poem, in a GREAT new series from Penny Parker Klostermann, AND a moose – click HERE!
Listen to this:
Perfect Picture Book Friday is still on hiatus for the summer (back next week! Come back for a GIVEAWAY!), but there are still plenty of selections on a themed and alphabetized list, each with teacher/parent resources, on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.