A picture book that was originally published in 1957, this new edition of Sparkle and Spin: A Book About Words is a great introduction to what words are. Combining bold, bright graphic illustrations with a text that begs to be read aloud:
Some words are gay and bright and full of light like tinsel and silver and sparkle.
Sparkle and Spin highlights rhyming, onomatopoeia and homonyms. Although the striking illustrations and wordplay will be enjoyed by very young children, there is much here for older children and adults to appreciate.
Well-crafted wordless picture books are terrific for young readers. They provide opportunities for children to ‘read’ the illustrations and retell the story. They are also super for multilingual families – a grandparent who does not speak English can enjoy the story-sharing experience in any language.
Where’s Walrus? is a stylish, bold look at a daring escape from the city zoo. While most of the zoo animals and their keeper nap, a walrus decides it is time for fun. His first destination is just outside the zoo gates. He jumps into a large fountain and reclines next to a stone mermaid. With the keeper in hot pursuit, he shifts to a coffee shop, a store window and a construction site. Later, he helps a crew of firefighters and joins a dance team. Each time the walrus moves, he changes his head covering and manages to evade detection. Young children will enjoy “finding” the walrus while the zookeeper searches in vain. For older children, the absurdity of the premise will add to the humor.
Where’s Walrus? will be an excellent addition to a classroom zoo theme. Extension activities could include choosing new a head covering and ‘hiding’ Walrus somewhere new.
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