This Australian import cries out for toddler participation, with parts for everyone.
The little dinosaur—an outline sketch of a creature drawn with multicolored pencil—rejoices in total mudlusciousness with a vigorous chant. “I’m a dirty dinosaur / with a dirty face. // I never have a wash / I just shake about the place.” The winsome background to the dinosaur’s antics is painted with watercolor and smeared and splattered with actual mud. Opposite, in bold print with each letter a different color, is the refrain: “SHAKE, SHAKE, / SHAKE, SHAKE, / SHAKE ABOUT / THE PLACE!” The dinosaur goes on to mention a “dirty tum,” which it taps like a drum: “TAP, TAP,” etc. There is also stamping about the street with dirty feet and sliding that dirty tail “like a snail.” At the end, in deep realization of its yuckiness, the dinosaur decides to go to the swamp and “GIVE MYSELF A WASH!” Birds, flowers, dragonflies and a frog or two accompany the protagonist, who walks (dances, really) on two legs and sports little stegosauruslike spine plates and a belly button.
It is nearly impossible to look at without reading aloud, chanting aloud, and even tapping and stamping and sliding: extreme joyousness. (Picture book. 4-7)