Friday, March 2, 2012

Book Review 1: 10 Little Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle

Preface:  I thought that it would be fun to really start reading to Hayden.  He received quite a few books for his birthday (thank you Mandy, Deena, and Angela), and I have been getting him books as well.  I love the classic, little kid books.  I want Hayden to get an early start with reading and comprehension, so that begins now.  Hayden and I will be reading books together, and I think we'll review each one.  I'll talk about what I did to engross him into the book, and how he responds.  I'll also let you know how I felt about the book (it's message, picture quality, age appropriateness, etc.).  If you don't enjoy the book review, there should at least be pictures of Hayden for you!

Author:  Eric Carle is AMAZING.  He writes his own books, and does the illustrations as well.  The pictures really are one of a kind; Carle uses a process he created to paint abstract patterns onto tissue paper.  He then cuts shapes out of these different colored paintings to create the picture he wants.  This means that, while each creation is completely unique, anyone can make this kind of painting.  When Hayden is older, we will definitely do some Eric Carle painting.  Maybe we'll write our own book and make the illustrations! 

Other than his illustration process, Carle has written and/or illustrated books that have been childhood favorites of mine, such as:  Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you See? (1967)  The Very Hungry Caterpillar (1969), and (more recently) Dream Snow (2000). 

Looks like he's waving!  I recommend putting your child (if he/she is young) into the high chair to read the book.  Hayden is too young to understand how to care for books with paper pages, so I keep them up and out of his reach.  He has access to his board books right now.  By putting Hayden in his high chair, I am keeping the book safe, and allowing Hayden to have a tray full of items to relate with while I read.  

Plot: 10 Little Rubber Ducks was written and illustrated by Carle in 2005.  The pictures do NOT disappoint.  They are bright, dreamy, and perfect for children!  The book is about 10 rubber ducks (huge spoiler, lol) that become lost in the shipping process.  They venture across  the sea and run into 10 other animals.  

Age Appropriateness:  We happened to have a bunch of rubber ducks on hand because they are Hayden's (and Paul's!) favorite.  I highly recommend getting at least one!  Hayden liked being able to hold onto one as we read through the story.  Someday he will realize that the rubber duck he holds in his hand is the same as the rubber duck on the page! ....Someday.... ha.  

If you have older children (or even a class of them), it might be fun to have them act out the story as you read it.  You might have a child be the sea, have one child hold the box that the ducks are shipped in, and have 10 other children be the animals (a flamingo, dolphin, etc) that the ducks come across.  
Mandy also sent this big, plush duck for Hayden to play with.  It is SOOO soft.  Hayden loved to hold onto it and then throw it off of his tray!  

If nothing else, emphasize the sounds and actions in the book!  There's a storm, there are animals that stare, animals that jump, and animals that roar!  Hayden really enjoyed it when I did this.  Smiles and giggles and laughter are all good things.

Hayden has his own, but his most favorite duck is his daddy's old duck!  Paul's mom had saved it for him and then she sent it for Hayden after he was born.  It's a good thing because he LOVES it!

 Mandy sent Hayden this book just because!  It says, "Love you Haydo Tornado"!  She has decided that is his nick-name.  I think it's one of those ironic nick-names (like calling someone "Tiny" when they are actually huge, because Hayden is one calm, little boy!
 Write a Dedication:  If you're getting this book (or any other book) for someone, or receiving it as a gift, it's kind of fun to write a little message on the title page or end-paper.  It gives the book a little bit of history that I think Hayden will enjoy when he's older.  I don't know, maybe I'm just a little sentimental, but when I was little I loved reading through our family's old Christmas cards that we had received from family and friends.  I liked knowing about my family before I was born or when I was too little to know what was happening around me.  For this reason, make a little dedication to the child the book goes to!  I'm glad that my sister did this for Hayden--it was a great idea I had never thought of!
Another spoiler alert!  The 4th animal that one of the ducks runs into is a flamingo.  I just wanted to show Carle's beautiful artwork!  Hayden had a blast looking at the pictures.

The cover of 10 Little Rubber Ducks and the ducks we used while we read the story.

So, conclusion:  I LOVED this book.  What's not to love?  It's another Eric Carle masterpiece.  The illustrations (and the duck that he held) seemed to keep Hayden occupied and interested most of the time.  Hayden is only 1 and has about a 20 second attention span.  The book is also awesome because it teaches as you read.  It uses repetition, teaches counting, and teaches a simple moral at the end (no, won't spoil that one for ya!).  Overall, the book is a great success!

1 comment:

  1. I wanted to say I love the quote at the top of your blog- that is so awesome!