Saturday, July 7, 2012

Old MacDonald Had Her Farm, by JonArno Lawson (illustrated by Tina Holdcroft)

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I love this book for quite a few reasons. One, Old MacDonald is a female farmer. It's a little thing, I know, but I like it. Second, the illustrations are hilarious and practically cry out for multiple perusals. And third, the concept of the book is fantastic. Instead of animals, the set up is "Old MacDonald had her farm A-E-I-O-U. And when she came across an A, this is what she'd do:" and then lists a whole bunch of action words that feature the letter "A" (repeat for E, I, etc., and then "sometimes Y"). It's the sort of book that I think two-year-olds would like (my own personal focus group of one, Magda, calls it "pretty wondaful") because it's cute and funny. But I also think that elementary school kids who are learning about vowel sounds would enjoy it because the pictures are so hilarious, even if it looks like a preschool book. 

One word of caution to educators and parents who are planning to read this book aloud to children. It's not that easy to read! It starts off with a similar rhythm and cadence as "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" so the natural instinct is to try to make the rest of the book into a sing-songy rhyme, but be warned! It's hard to say these phrases fast, let alone in a sing-songy way. If you're not a professional performance poet, you may want to read it through a couple of times before you read it aloud to your class. Still, watching you get tongue tied will probably be half the fun for your little ones!

Hit the jump for Magda's take and more!

Magda's reaction:
"Uh, it's pretty wondaful! I don't know what happened on the farm but there was all kinds of aminals and I liked the plums."

You might also like:

Old Macdonald: A Hand-Puppet Board Book (Little Scholastic)
Old MacDonald: A Hand Puppet Board Book (Little Scholastic) 

Old MacDonald Had a Farm - 50 Songs
Old MacDonald Had a Farm 50 Songs (MP3 download)

A Voweller's Bestiary: From Aardvark to Guineafowl (and H), by JonArno Lawson

Disclaimer: I received a digital galley of this book free from the publisher from I was not obliged to write a favourable review, or even any review at all. The opinions expressed are strictly my own.

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