PPBF: Baabwaa and Wooliam

613D8E24-C27E-4BA4-B08B-20809849FD25Author: David Elliott
Illustrator: Melissa Sweet
Publisher: Candlewick, 2018
Age: 4-8
Themes: sheep, wolves, reading, knitting

593745FA-8F00-4D57-8EAA-DB9DCDB0EB72Opening: This is Wooliam. He is a sheep. You will note that Wooliam is reading. There are not many sheep who read. But Wooliam is one of them.

92119E42-52B6-47F4-B93C-70532F2BF02DSummary: (from the publisher): Baabwaa is a sheep who loves to knit. Wooliam is a sheep who loves to read. It sounds a bit boring, but they like it. Then, quite unexpectedly, a third sheep shows up. A funny-looking sheep who wears a tattered wool coat and has long, dreadfully decaying teeth. Wooliam, being well-read, recognizes their new acquaintance: the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing! The wolf is so flattered to discover his literary reputation precedes him that he stops trying to eat Baabwaa and Wooliam. And a discovery by the sheep turns the encounter into an unexpected friendship.

8936AC7D-D8DE-45FC-9161-63D2A61E358AI like this book because:The whimsical watercolor-collages are cheerful and satisfying, as I always note them to be in Melissa Sweet’s books, but this time I am especially enjoying the character designs. I want to camp out with these three! But the storytelling! Ahh! It’s the sort I might call cheeky if I new exactly how the British apply the word. In any case it takes me back to stories I’ve read to my children just before they started reading early chapter books on their own, where they had more patience and could soak up all the goodness of a well-layered sense of humor. Have I sold you yet?

8E1409D8-30B4-4EB3-8A4F-246D98B9FFBFResources/Activities: read a book, learn to knit a scarf (check out THIS video), then head out on an adventure – birdsong included. Pack a lunch to take along, unless you like eating grass; make a map of where you’ve been, like the one on page 8; read multiple wolf-themed books so you too can recognize one when you see it! Make a sheep craft, like the one below – more info HERE.

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For more Perfect Picture Book Friday picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

PPBF: A Well-Mannered Young Wolf

wellmanneredwolfcoverAuthor: Jean Leroy
Illustrator: Matthieu Maudet
Publisher: Eerdmans, 2016, originally publ. in France by L’école des loisirs, 2013
Age: 4-8
Themes: wolves, manners, humorous stories
OpeningA young wolf, whose parents had taught him good manners, went hunting alone, in the forest for the first time.
Summary: (from my library catalog, short and to the point) A young wolf must fulfill his prey’s last wishes before he devours them.

wellmanneredwolf2Why I like this book: I have a penchant for sweet-on-the-outside stories with bite! The illustrations are much like those found in graphic novels, with very simple use of color and white space, allowing for the characters to take the simple plot on a well-paced ride!

wellmanneredwolf3Resources/Activities: A great book to discuss manners, honor, expectation and safety too!

wellmanneredwolfbackFor more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

PPBF: The Wolves of Currumpaw

WolvesOfCurrumpawCoverAuthor/Illustrator: William Grill
Publisher: Flying Eye Books, 2016
Age: 7-14
Themes: wolves, wildlife conservation, New Mexico
OpeningHalf a million wolves once roamed freely across North America, but with the arrival of European settlers the habitats of the animals began to change.

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Summary: (from my library catalog) Lobo, the legendary leader of a band of cattle-killing wolves has been terrorizing cattle ranchers and their livestock in the American Southwest. Bounty hunter Ernest Thompson Seton, sets out to trap and exterminate Lobo. “A beautiful re-telling of the first story from Ernest Thompson Seton’s 1898 Classic, Wild Animals I Have Known”–publisher.

WolvesOfCurrumpaw1Resources/Activities: Why I like this book: I deeply admire William Grill’s visual storytelling skills (see my recommendation for Shackleton’s Journey HERE) and was so pleased to find this in the library! I made myself a nice cup of coffee and sat down with it as soon as I got home but barely took a sip, I was so riveted. By the time I finished my coffee was cold, and I was sopping up my tears! A sad AND beautifully told story you will not regret reading. I promise!

WolvesOfCurrumpaw2For more Perfect Picture Book picks with teacher/parent resources, check out the list on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: HOG-EYE

Hog-EyeCoverAuthor/Illustrator: Susan Meddaugh
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin, 1995
Ages: 3-7yrs
Themes: pigs, wolves, reading
Opening: Yesterday my whole family met me at the door. They wanted to know why I diodn’t go to school. Spo I told them the true story. It’s not my fault it’s….
Summary: (from my library catalog) A young pig uses her ability to read to outwit a wolf that intends to eat her.

Hog-EyeTitleI like this book because: I love a good smartie-pants protagonist! This reminds me strongly of The Amazing Bone from another favorite author, William Steig, yet has it’s own charms! Would be grteat to read in tandem!

Hog-Eye1Resources/activities: talk about poisonous plants, esp. what can be found in recreational areas nearby; draw pictures of the plants; discuss what you can do if you have encountered them. Also read The Amazing Bone from William Steig.

Hog-Eye2For more PPBF selections including resources and activities, go to Susanna Hill’s blog: HERE

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PPBF: Little Red

LittleRedCoverAuthor: Lynn Roberts
Illustrator: David Roberts
Publisher: Abrams, 2005
Ages: 4-8yrs
Themes: wolves, grandmothers, soft drinks
Opening: In a time not too long ago and in a land much like our own, there lived a young boy. His name was Thomas, but – for some reason – everyone called him Little Red.
Summary: (from my library catalog) In this version of the Grimm fairy tale, Thomas–who is called Little Red–discovers a wolf in disguise at his grandmother’s house and ingeniously uses ginger ale to save the day.

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I like this book because: of the mouth-watering illustrations, pure and simple. Just look! And EVERY page is gorgeous! And it’s a well told twist on a classic, set in post-revolutionary America. Need I say more?

LittleRed Spread2

Resources/activities: because we all know the storyline, this is an excellent story to use to teach improvisation or writing of fractured fairy tales: perform Little Red ad lib, in groups of 3-5; make it a puppet show. Read their other collaborations: Cinderella, An Art Deco Love Story and Rapunzel: A Groovy Fairy Tale.

LittleRedEndpapers

Perfect Picture Book Friday has plenty of selections listed on a themed and alphabetized list, each with teacher/parent resources, on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE.

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PPBF: Big Wolf & Little Wolf

Author: Nadine Brun-Cosme
Illustrator: Olivier Tallec
Publisher: Enchanted Lion, 2010
Ages: 4-8yrs
Themes: wolves, feelings, friendship, loneliness
Opening: Big Wolf lived under his tree at the top of a hill. It had always been that way. Then one day Little Wolf arrived. He came from so far away that at first he looked no bigger than a dot.
Summary: (from my library catalog) Big Wolf has always lived alone at the top of a hill under a tree, so when a little wolf suddenly arrives one day, he does not know what to think.

I like this book because: I love the illustrations (big surprise, Patricia?), but more importantly this is a very touching story on the evolution of a friendship, told slowly, gently, creating the perfect tension. Bet you couldn’t read it fast if you wanted to! Perfect accompaniment for a lollipop.

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Resources/activities: Read the other books in this series: Big Wolf and Little Wolf, Such A Beautiful Orange!, and Big Wolf and Little Wolf, The Little Leaf That Wouldn’t Fall; watch the following interview with Tallec on his books, Waterloo & Trafalgar and Big Wolf & Little Wolf; discuss friendship, sharing and loneliness.

Perfect Picture Book Friday is on hiatus for the summer, but there are still plenty of selections on a themed and alphabetized list, with teacher/parent resources, on Susanna Hill’s blog HERE

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Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit. – Aristotle