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From the QEB Storytime series

Not the best teaching tool, though it does address aspects of time often left out of other books on time-telling.

Oh, the problems you can have when you can’t tell time!

Wilfred Wolf is thrilled to be invited to Ella’s party, but how will he know when it’s 3:00? He doesn’t want to miss a thing! Maybe his friends can help. But Boris Bear’s cuckoo clock startles Wilfred, who not only drops his lunch, but the clock as well. Now what? Amelia Squirrel offers to lend Wilfred her digital watch, but he learns the hard way that watches and water don’t mix. Oscar Owl’s solution sees Wilfred knocking on Ella’s door at 3 a.m., and Henry Rooster only greets the dawn—no special requests. Exhausted, Wilfred goes home and sleeps until afternoon, when his friends knock on his door and teach him to tell time by drawing a clock face on the ground and take him to the party, where he has a fantastic time. This lone double-page spread is the only instruction in telling time that readers will get, though Barrah incorporates many different types of timepieces and ways of telling time—by the sunrise, by when you are tired or hungry, etc. Unaddressed is Wilfred’s destruction of so many timepieces. Smallman’s anthropomorphized characters exude friendly enthusiasm. Backmatter includes a page of questions and activities for adults to share with readers.

Not the best teaching tool, though it does address aspects of time often left out of other books on time-telling. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: June 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-60992-742-4

Page Count: 24

Publisher: QEB Publishing

Review Posted Online: March 31, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2015

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While this is a fairly bland treatment compared to Deborah Lee Rose and Carey Armstrong-Ellis’ The Twelve Days of...

Rabe follows a young girl through her first 12 days of kindergarten in this book based on the familiar Christmas carol.

The typical firsts of school are here: riding the bus, making friends, sliding on the playground slide, counting, sorting shapes, laughing at lunch, painting, singing, reading, running, jumping rope, and going on a field trip. While the days are given ordinal numbers, the song skips the cardinal numbers in the verses, and the rhythm is sometimes off: “On the second day of kindergarten / I thought it was so cool / making lots of friends / and riding the bus to my school!” The narrator is a white brunette who wears either a tunic or a dress each day, making her pretty easy to differentiate from her classmates, a nice mix in terms of race; two students even sport glasses. The children in the ink, paint, and collage digital spreads show a variety of emotions, but most are happy to be at school, and the surroundings will be familiar to those who have made an orientation visit to their own schools.

While this is a fairly bland treatment compared to Deborah Lee Rose and Carey Armstrong-Ellis’ The Twelve Days of Kindergarten (2003), it basically gets the job done. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: June 21, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-06-234834-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 3, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2016

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Unusual illustrations enhance an engaging, informative narrative.

What can a worm do?

A little worm sets off on a “twirl” to “see the world.” But when it overhears a human referring to it as “just a worm,” its feelings are hurt. The worm asks other critters­—including a caterpillar, a spider, a dragonfly—what they can do. After each answer (turn into a butterfly, spin silk thread, fly), the worm becomes more and more dejected because it can’t do any of these things. “Maybe I am just a worm.” But then the worm encounters a ladybug, who eats aphids and other insects, and the worm realizes that it eats dead plants and animals and keeps gardens clean. And though the worm can’t pollinate like the bee, it does create castings (poop) that help plants grow and stay healthy. These abilities, the worm realizes in triumph, are important! The cleverness of this story lies in its lighthearted, effective dissemination of information about various insects as well as earthworms. It doesn’t hurt that the expressive little worm is downright adorable, with emotions that will resonate with anyone who has felt unimportant. The stunning illustrations are done in quilled paper—a centuries-old technique that involves assembling strips of colored paper into shapes—which adds sparkle and originality. A tutorial of how to make a quilled butterfly and a page on earthworm facts round out the book. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Unusual illustrations enhance an engaging, informative narrative. (Informational picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 14, 2023

ISBN: 978-0-06-321256-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: Nov. 15, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2022

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