What a creative and thought-provoking, rhyming book for both adults and children!
As an elementary school librarian who reads books aloud to children every day, I can see this one as a book that will capture their attention because there is substance here that will connect with their prior knowledge to make this book worthy of their time. I predict that this title will be on several award lists this year. Readers are challenged to use their imaginations to repurpose and recycle objects that they own or discover on their path.
The illustrations, created by Terri Murphy, and names of the characters are multi-ethnic featuring children of all races. The expressions show joy, contentment, and pure fun as they “ramble” around the neighborhood. Even the kid who makes fun at first is motivated to join in the fun.
Text-to-Self: Can you think of something you have re-used as a pencil container? Ever made a jewelry box from an egg carton?
Text-to-Text: Oliver by Birgitta Sif; Not a Box by Antoinette Portis
Compare and Contrast: How is each “find” similar and different from what they imagine it to be?
Mental Image: Can you imagine the “find” being what they imagine it to be?
Predicting: Try predicting what the items on the last page might be used for. There is an illustration, but no text so the reader has to use his or her imagination to infer or predict what these could be used for.
Synthesis: Can you think of other things their “finds” could be? Can you think of something you see that could be like something else? Think about the places you like to play and what you have played with there. I remember as a child playing house inside a group of Cedar trees where there was a small clearing in the middle of them. It was like nature made me my own playhouse.
Extension: Do a search on the Internet to find how people have repurposed what might be trash to some people into useful or artistic objects.
A review copy of this book was provided by the publisher.
Schema: getting a new pet, having a new sibling to share with
Mental Images: This is a great book to teach students how to make a mental image. The author/illustrator only provides a close up view of part of a chair, part of a person coming in the door, watching TV, and only legs at cabinet preparing dinner. Students can stop and try to imagine the rest of the illustration in their minds. I do not think we can stress making a mental image too much with young readers. It is a skill that is learned and if not allowed to practice and try, many students never grasp this very abstract concept.
Text-to-Text Connections: Miss Nelson is Missing by Harry Allard
Mental Images: This is a wonderful text to use to practice making a mental image. The students can imagine the description of each student, then the teacher/librarian can show them the illustration in the book. The substitute “creacher” tells his students about the students he has met during his years of substituting. The story is told in rhyme and is accompanied by large colorful illustrations.
Text-to-text Connections: In both this story and Knufflebunny, the main characters have lost a favorite toy.
Text-to-text Connections: Found by Salina Yoon features a bear who finds a lost stuffed bunny. This book also teaches compassion as the bear sadly gives the bunny to the moose, it’s owner. Moose feels compassion for the bear and decides the bunny needs to be with someone who would love it like he did when he was younger.
The illustration of the little boy looks very similar to Maurice Sendak’s Max from Where the Wild Things Are.
Drawing Conclusions: After reading the book and looking at the illustrations of the book the boy is reading, his stuffed toys, and the animals he meets as he hunts for his rabbit, do you conclude that he was using his imagination about going into the forest?
Summarize: The beginning, middle, and end of the story.
Compare and Contrast: with other books where a toy is lost, with other books where the character is using his imagination such as Where the Wild Things Are.
Author’s Purpose: To inform and entertain the reader.
Mental Images: Note the scenes where Ana imagines herself in the books she is reading. This is an example of what readers do when they make a mental image while reading. The illustrations help us to see Ana’s mental images as she reads.
Synthesis: Have you ever been inspired by a story you have read to write one of your own? Ana wrote a story for the librarian. If you were to write your own story, what characters would you include? Can you think of characters from books you have read that you really liked and wish there was a sequel to? What are your favorite series books?
Informational Literature: much factual information about the function of the heart is included. Information about foods, exercise, and the function of the parts of the heart are included in the story.
Personification: Henry’s heart is depicted with some human features with eyes a mouth and feelings.
Henry falls in love with a puppy. We finally have an author who thinks about the chaos that is caused by a nude body part and includes a fig leaf to cover that part in the illustration of Henry’s body. This would be a fun book to read around Valentine’s Day.
Cause and Effect: Henry’s heart is effected by the different causes that occur in the story. His heart reacts to the different stimuli with a fast or slow beat.
Drawing Conclusions and Inferring: What do you conclude Henry has fallen in love with when you read the description of the “girl?”
Text-to-text connections: From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg
Cause and Effect: Because Ben was talking on the phone during a storm, the effect was that Ben lost his hearing when lightning struck the phone line.
Characterization: List Ben’s traits: curious, smart, brave to travel alone, good speller and writer, uses any resource available, resourceful for eating food left by others. How are the character traits of Ben and his mother alike?
Drawing Conclusions: Practice drawing conclusions as you read the pictures for Rose’s story. Inference is used to draw the conclusions.
Point of View: author’s: third person, character’s: Ben and Rose
Summarizing: Summarize Rose’s early life up to when she meets Ben
Mental Image: Can you make a mental image of the wolves chasing Ben? Check out the wolves’ diorama from the AMNH in New York City.
Author’s purpose: to share African American history
Author’s Point of View: 3rd person omniscient as we see the story from more than one character’s point of view
Cause and Effect: Because Henry’s family was sold, the effect was that Henry went to the extreme of mailing himself to escape the sorrow of slavery.
Characterize Henry: hard working, good listener, loving, strong
Mental Images: Henry imagined the carts carrying away his family and all that he loved every night.
Drawing Conclusions: Henry knew that the mail was delivered everywhere. He thought he could stand being in a box for many hours. He drew the conclusion that he could mail himself north to escape slavery.
After Henry’s family is sold, he purposefully pours sulphuric acid on his hand so that he could stay home from work in order to get some help in mailing himself to the northern states to escape slavery in the southern United States.