Second Grade: Thumbs Up for "The Incredible Book Eating Boy"
Dept. of Still a Ways to Go

Libraries, Peanut Butter, and Bears

School has started, and with it, I'm back in the classroom once a week, reading to second graders. So far we have read these picture books:

Tomás and the Library Lady, written by Pat Mora and illustrated by Raul Colón. A friendly bookseller at Manhattan's charming La Casa Azul recommended this one, which is sprinkled with Spanish words. Tomás, the child of migrant Texas farm workers, find a place of refuge in an Iowa library and enjoys the attention of two mentors in the "library lady" and his grandfather. It's based on the childhood experiences of Tomás Rivera, who went on to become a university chancellor.

Peanut Butter and Homework Sandwiches, written by Leslie Broadie Cook and illustrated by Jack E. Davis. A silly tale of a kid who just can't get it right, homework-wise, through no fault of his own.

The Three Bears, written and illustrated by Paul Galdone. Before hearing Mo Willems' parody Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs, the second graders needed some familiarity with the fairy tale, and Galdone's is a straight-forward rendering. Of course some knew the story already, but the discussion afterward was our longest so far. Among the kids' contributions were Destiny's keen observations about the illustrations and Miguel's announcement of his birthday. Oh, and Huynh will soon have a baby brother or sister.

Some years ago I found Galdone's work through the recommendations in Esmé Raji Codell's How to Get Your Child to Love Reading. Along with Jim Trelease's Read-Aloud Handbook, Codell's guide is a must-have resource for people who share books with young children.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Smart of you to work from familiarity; Pam Cochlan was horrified by the unfamiliarity of the kids in her library with stuff like Old MacDonald. You can't understand parody until you know the real by heart, after all.

Tanita, you're so right on this. I did read the Three Dinosaurs book this week. The kids liked it well enough, but I think they needed to have heard the original story more times to pick up a lot of Willems' humor. I had a sense of their not quite making the connections as I read. Now, if I had read a parody of Frozen, the case may have been different!

The comments to this entry are closed.