BUG DANCE by Stuart J. Murphy

BUG DANCE

Age Range: 4 - 7

KIRKUS REVIEW

Murphy (Seaweed Soup, 2001, etc.) adds to his popular MathStart series with this well-meant but clumsy effort at creating a plot around the directional terms left, right, forward, and backward. A handful of insects are collected for the story’s characters, with a team of rascally red ants, protagonist Centipede, and his friends Cricket and Inchworm learning a new dance in gym class from Coach Caterpillar. Centipede, of course, has trouble learning the simple dance sequence because of his many feet, though he finally perseveres and gets all his feet going in the correct directions. The simple dance sequence is illustrated with step-by-step diagrams and directional arrows, with an additional summary page, musical score, and an author’s note including related activities. Santoro’s (Jumbo, 2001, etc.) vibrant watercolor illustrations of buggy-eyed insects are the work’s greatest strength, with jolly, jumpy bugs that seem ready to dance off the page. The humorous illustrations soar, but the pedestrian plot about the clumsy centipede keeps tripping on its own feet. Though this isn’t one of the best of the series, a determined teacher with enthusiastic read-aloud skills could integrate the story into math or gym class, especially if insects are also part of the curriculum. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-06-028910-4
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 2001




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