Book Reviews by Carrie Anne
When school started up again we all knew that summer was behind us, but sometimes it’s hard to let go. It takes great effort to convince my kids that they need to wear socks and undershirts again, that a hoodie isn’t the same as a jacket when they go outside and that hats and mittens are now a dressing staple. Now that November is here and the cold is setting-in I think my kids are starting to understand the importance of dressing for the weather. In case you have stubborn summer kids, here are a few books about cold weather clothes that might get them in the mood.
written and illustrated by Kit Allen
published by Houghton Mifflin Books
This is a wonderful book consisting of simple single word vocabulary (hat, mittens, longjohns) on one side of the page and wonderful stick illustrations opposite. Even as a board book consisting on single words, it manages to tell a delightful story. A child gets dressed to go outside to play in the cold weather then comes back inside to enjoy a warm cocoa before bed. I love that the book shows the child layering clothes on before going out and is dressed so you only see eyes peeking out. The illustrations cross the center of the page keeping them nice and big but without cluttering up the words. There are three other books in this wonderful series: Galoshes, Swimsuit, Sweater.
written by Karla Kuskin, illustrated by Fumi Kosaka
published by Harper Collins
picture book (age 4-8)
Based on Karla Kuskin’s original poem ‘Winter Clothes’ published in 1964, Fumi Kosaka’s pastel illustrations have turned this into a wonderful book for kids to enjoy. The child comes in from outside and takes off layers of outdoor clothes. After enjoying a hot drink and cookies the layers go back on for another outside adventure. The story consists of simple sentences and the page structure encourages kids to guess what comes next. Kosaka’s illustrations focus on just the child and avoid cluttering up this easy-to-read story with extra background images. This and the repetitive text makes it an ideal story for beginner readers.
written by Shirley Neitzel, illustrated by Nancy Winslow Parker
published by Greenwillow Books
rebus picture book (baby to preschool)
Similar to the story structure and rhyme of ‘The House that Jack Built’, this story builds with each layer of clothes. As a new article is added, it’s given extra emphasis on it’s own page, then beside it lists the other clothing elements already included. The repetitive text and the rebus images make for a consistent and predictable story, great for beginning readers. Children will be able to read parts of the story and enjoy predicting the clothing that comes on next. This is a great way to introduce winter clothing vocabulary too. Be warned, you kids may take to repeating all or parts of the rhyme when getting dressed to go out.
written by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Michael Martchenko
published by Annick Press
picture book (age 4-8)
This is the most copy heavy of this month’s book picks, but you can’t go wrong with a Robert Munsch book. He writes with kids in mind, repeating text and adding sound effects. Thomas refuses to wear his new brown snowsuit. When his mother insists he puts it on they have a big struggle. The snowsuit is on but Thomas’ mom looks frazzled after the ordeal. Thomas’ behaviour is repeated at school when his teacher and principal ask him to put his snowsuit on. A struggle ensues and the teacher and principal end up in their underwear. In the end Thomas wants to go out and play with his friends so he puts his snowsuit on without any trouble. I’m sure kids and parents alike will relate to this woes of winter dressing, but in the end, in order to enjoy the outside and friends, the winter gear needs to go on, and Thomas realizes that.
________________________________________________________________________________Carrie Anne is a regular contributor to No Time For Flash Cards, she is a mom of 3 who knows a thing or two about bundling up, and writing! You can find her every day at her blog Another day. Another thought…or two.