WHAT DID I LOOK LIKE WHEN I WAS A BABY? by Jeanne Willis

WHAT DID I LOOK LIKE WHEN I WAS A BABY?

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 8
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Most schoolchildren in the primary grades study lifecycles in science class, often focusing on frogs to observe their dramatic metamorphosis. This droll picture book by Willis (author of the Dr. Xargle series) follows several different species as each young’un questions a parent about his or her looks as a baby, from the little boy on the cover through a baboon, hippopotamus, leopard, ostrich, hyena, warthog, and chameleon. All the parents answer that their babies looked like smaller versions of Mom and Dad, with most of the answers including a delicious pun relating to that particular animal’s looks or attributes. (The hyena mommy replies that her baby “looked just like your dad and we laughed and laughed!”) Of course, the little bullfrog is another story entirely, and at first he is horrified by the baby pictures his mother shows him. In disbelief, he vows “never to trust his mother again,” until he hears his brothers and sisters singing a clever song detailing the frog lifecycle and realizes that all frogs must go through the same stages of development. The words to the song are included in the text, and can be sung to an original tune (music appended) or to a traditional folk tune. The amusing full-color illustrations by Ross (illustrator of the Amber Brown and Dr. Xargle series) are a delight, with sly additions of humor, such as the young ostrich wearing her mom’s green high heels and the mother snake putting on her lipstick in the reflection of a pond. A fine choice for a frog-themed story time or for integrating a satisfying read-aloud into science class. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-399-23595-7
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2000




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