Publishing: Random House, New York, 2012
Awards: 2013 ALA Notable Children’s Book
Description: Animals keep falling into a very deep hole. First a frog, then a mouse, a monkey, bear, etc. Eventually a tiger comes along and sees the animals stuck in the hole and is going to make a meal of them. To the animals rescue comes an elephant, and in the commotion the animals get out of the pit and the tiger is knocked in. When he asks to be pulled out, the animals reply, “Oh, no!” The text is pleasingly repetitive, it almost reads like a song.
Programming: Because of the many characters and repetitive nature, this would be a good book for a felt board or a reader’s play.
Publishing: Crowne Publishers, New York, 1994
Awards: Caldecott Honor
Description: This wordless picture book shows a bird flying around dinosaur skeletons in museums. As pages turn the reader sees the bird with the dinosaurs in their heyday. When the little bird is swallowed, however, he comes out on the other side of the skeleton. This book makes a bridge between then and now and beautifully expresses the passage of time.
Programming: This would be a good segue for discussing different types of dinosaurs, and especially, when it was that they roamed the earth. Activities might include a pretend excavation or a report on a type of dinosaur.
Publishing: Roaring Book Press; Brookfield, CT; 2002
Awards: Caldecott Medal Winner
Description: Mouse is friends with Rabbit, even though “whatever he does, wherever he goes, trouble follows.” When Rabbit gets their plane stuck in a tree, he has a plan to get it down. Though the plan doesn’t work out very well, Mouse knows that Rabbit means well. Each illustration resembles the cover, with a mostly blue background and drawings with thick, black outlines. The colors are bright and aesthetically pleasing.
Programming: I think this is a story that could benefit from a felt story board, because the background doesn’t really change and all you would need are felt cutouts of each character. I think discussions about this book could center on friendship and what makes a good friend.