Inspiration From The Distant Past

Inspiration From The Distant Past
Found note in an old book... warms the cockles of my bookish heart...

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Storytime: There's a Bird on Your Head! by Mo Willems

Hey, Y'all! This is my first official post for the new challenge - picture books. I am super excited, because I read to my little ones so much, yet I hate to keep BLATHERING on about it, you know?
But, now, you HAVE to read my blathering, AND you have to like it. See? It's a Win - sorta Win situation.

Now. On to the review.

My review first. Now, I am speaking as a mom of three, count'em (I have to!), three squirmy wormies! And, although you may feel as though I am a regular June Cleaver (I give off that impression), I actually get rather bored reading some children's books. I know! Gasp! The horror!

So, my perspective is one of a young(ish) mother who will be reading said story about 20 times during the following week. How disgusted will I be with it? THAT, ladies and germs, IS the question!

This book, by Mo Willems, is absolutely. adorable. Aaaand (Yes, there is an "and"!) aaand...FUNNY!
I could totally read this one 20 times this week! 

The pictures are very simple- actually the same basic picture as the cover. I like that because you see the expressions on Piggie's and Elephant's face, and the colors are muted. So there is not a lot to distract from the words.

And the words are very easy to read - the story is a conversation between Piggie and Elephant and beginning readers can read the high frequency words that they will be familiar with (the, bird, on, etc), but there is enough repetition for them to grasp new harder words and memorize them (somewhere, head, etc).

This book will be entertaining for older readers, as well, but it will not be challenging. This is really a beginner's level book.

All of the books in this series (Piggie and Elephant) are similarly written, and I give them a "4 Whews!" and "2 1/2 Snickers (as in laughs, not the candy...although that could work too..)". I may just buy this book and a few more in the series.

Are You Ready to Play Outside? (An Elephant and Piggie Book)Watch Me Throw the Ball! (An Elephant and Piggie Book)Should I Share My Ice Cream? (An Elephant and Piggie Book)I Love My New Toy! (An Elephant and Piggie Book)

Nico's interview. (Nico is six, and "motivationally challenged" - that means...uhh..lazy. So he HATES to actually read - he wants me to do it. He pretends, yes, pretends to sound out the words so that I will give in and just read the dang word. He works harder at not working than actually working!)

Me: Nico, did you like this book?
Nico: Uh-huh. Can I go?
Me: No.What did you like about it?
Nico: I don't know. Are we finished?
Me: Not yet. COME BACK HERE! Did. you. like. the. story.
Nico: Yeah. It was funny. Maaaamaaaa, can I go NOW?
Me: Jus' a sec. Did you like to read the words?
Nico: No. Well, yeah, but I just don't know how to read all those books. Can I go?
Me: *sigh* NO! Now. What was your favorite part?
Nico: Elephant said "Aaaaaaaaaaaaagh." And it was funny. He thinks there was a bird on his head!
Me: NICO! COME. HERE! Do you think other kids would like this book?
Nico: (Grinning) Yeah. It was funny. Now can I go?

I must say, I let him go. Through the entire interview, he was hopping up and down. How would Oprah or Barbara Wawa have handled it? Could they have made him cry? Or would they have started to cry?

Anyway, folks. There you have it. It was funny. And not torturous to read the words. He read it with me once, once by himself, and once with his brother and sister each. Not bad, boy-who-doesn't-like-to-read, not bad at all!

Please visit the Read to Me Picture Book Challenge's February linky party   hosted by There's A Book for more terrific picture books!


  1. I can just picture him straining to get away!

  2. Funny!! Yes, you do give off a June Cleaver vibe!!

    Oh, I know what you mean-- the best books are ones that don't drive the adult nuts!! When T and I both crack up, the book is a keeper!

    Do you ever change the words after several readings just to entertain youself and see if the kids notice? It makes T laugh and also makes him crazy-- turn about is fair play, I say!!

    I like the Whew and snicker ratings!!

  3. +JMJ+

    My favourite line: He works harder at not working than actually working!

    LOL! I remember one time I was trying to coax one of my brothers to do something. He kept insisting there wasn't enough time, coming up with brilliant excuse after brilliant excuse. I was still gullible enough at the time to be lured into his trap. Only after about ten minutes or so did realisation dawn, and I snapped, "Do you realise that if you had started it the moment you began arguing, you'd be finished by now?!?!?!"

    It's hard to call a kid like that lazy, though. ;-) So I'm going with your term "motivationally challenged," since it can mean that they're very motivated to do the wrong work. LOL!

  4. @DeLynne, yes he was...he's such a whiiiner!
    @Lesa- that sound fun - I will start changing words! See if I can keep a straight face!
    @E- Kids are funny..they are so determined not to do the "w" word (work). If you can make it fun, they don't know they are *working*. But that is hard to do!


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