TEN PUPPIES

A kindly mother dog adopts ten puppies from the Puppy Rescue Center in this clever math-influenced tale from Reiser (The Lost Ball / La Pelota Perdita, 2002, etc.). Each puppy is a different breed (or mix), with many different shapes, sizes, and color combinations represented. Each spread divides the ten dogs into two subgroups by some distinction: color of tongue, shape of nose, type of ear, and so on. (“EIGHT had pointed noses. TWO had flat noses.”) The corresponding numeral is printed in a bright, contrasting shade next to the primary-hued watercolor illustration that focuses on the characteristic under discussion. Math-minded adults will swiftly see the pattern of different combinations that add up to ten, but to kindergarteners and first-graders just beginning to explore addition, this representational rendering of all the possible combinations will be a novel and welcome way to combat hypothetical story problems. This story can also be used effectively with preschoolers who are learning about counting and classification, as well as the correlation between written number words and numerals. First-grade classroom teachers especially will welcome Reiser’s perky puppies, who convey a basic addition lesson with aplomb. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: April 1, 2003

ISBN: 0-06-008644-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2003

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POPPLETON

The first book in a proposed series of easy readers from the usually reliable Rylant (The Bookshop Dog, p. 1055) is an unqualified flop. Poppleton, dressed in coat, tie, and bowler, tires of city life and moves to a small town. Three stories follow that require neither a small-town setting nor a recent move. In the first, ``Neighbors,'' the limits of friendship are excessively defined when Cherry Sue invites Poppleton over too often, and he sprays her with the garden hose (instead of simply turning down the invitation) in his frustration over the situation. ``The Library'' shows how serious Poppleton is about his library day- -every Monday—as he sits at a table, spreads out his belongings, and reads an adventure. In ``The Pill,'' a sick friend who needs medicine asks Poppleton to disguise his pill in one of the many pieces of cake he consumes, recalling the tale in which Arnold Lobel's Frog and Toad try to make some cookies inaccessible, but cannot thwart their own appetites. The stories are unimaginative and poorly plotted, without the taut language and endearing humor of Rylant's Henry and Mudge tales or her Mr. Putter and Tabby books. Teague's scenes of a small town are charming but have no real story in which to take root, and the book is printed on cardboard-weight stock that all but overwhelms the format. (Fiction. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 1997

ISBN: 0-590-84782-1

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Blue Sky/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 1996

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

ON THE FIRST DAY OF KINDERGARTEN

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 4, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2016

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