Friday, September 6, 2013

Look Left, Look Right, Look Left Again (A Schoolhouse Crew Review)

 photo greenbarkpress_zps9eade074.jpg

 Greene Bark Press recently offered the Crew a chance to review their book, Look Left, Look Right, Look Left Again.  Written in easy repetitive language, and illustrated with bold primary colors and an endearing duckie protagonist, Wally Waddlewater, this book was a hit in our house.

Wally has a letter to mail. Not just any letter, but a birthday card for his grandmother.  As he and his mother walk to the mailbox, he practices how to cross the street --  "Look left, look right, make sure the ______ is out of sight. Remember then: look left again."  Along the way, he not only practices looking both ways, but learns he must stop before chasing a ball into the street, listen for fire truck sirens, learn the colors and rules of the traffic light, and once he starts across, stay in the crosswalk. It's a LOT for a little duck to remember, but he's a plucky one and safely navigates his way to the mailbox.

We live in the middle of nowhere.  "Traffic" on our street is usually a flock of turkeys.  We don't walk many places - there are no sidewalks, and the only "street" we do cross is the hospital driveway - which no longer has cars on the side we cross, due to construction blocking that end of the property.  Most of our "car-pedestrian safety" is learning to hold a hand or the stroller and not wandering off into a parking lot.  I really liked this book because it showed Wally in so many situations.  We actually were able to use some of them -- when a ball sailed out of the yard into the driveway, we practiced "Look left, look right..." before going out of the gate (you know, in case those turkeys decided to come by again).  However, proof that kids will apply what they learn in unexpected ways -- as we were walking through the hospital corridor, we needed to turn into a new hall.  I told Jude to watch, since I know that particular one leads to the orthopaedic units and is often crowded with children in wheelchairs. Some days I think they could use a traffic light or two at the edge of that hallway- all the hospital corridors have animal names (Duck Drive, Lobster Lane, etc.) and that one is not nicknamed the "Frog Freeway" for nothing!   I told him Jude to look out for the wheelchairs, and he sighed as only six-year-olds can, "I KNOW, Mommy...look left, look right!" 

big brothers read good bedtime stories

Jude doesn't like being read to.  He'd much rather make up the story from the pictures.  While we did read it a few times aloud, he preferred to re-tell me the story.  Damien, however, loved when Luke would read to him.  Often, Luke will read him a bedtime story while Neal or I get other kids into bed.  They enjoyed this book.  Luke's complaint: "Could Wally Waddlewater be any harder of a tongue twister?" After a while of tripping over it, he just would ad-lib and say "Wally" or "Wally's Mom" instead of repeating "Waddlewater."  Damien thought the onomatopoeia was hysterical; Luke, not so much.  I'm not sure how much of the point of the book Damien has learned, especially generally being carried or in a stroller when we are not home and not getting much opportunity to practice, but he loves the Wally and the story! 

little brothers like a  turn to read
  Round 2

The third reading in the same night. Damien has snuggled in; 
Luke has had enough and starts making it up as he goes along.

This board book is geared for children ages 3-8, and costs $8.50. I would rate it more for the preschool/kindergarten crowd, unless it was a "big kid and a younger sibling" reading it. Celia just turned 9, but I can totally see her rolling her eyes at reading this book for herself. However, she was happy to read it to Damien. (Luke finally said "I'll read it at bedtime, but you're on your own the rest of the day, kid!")   I think this is a great addition to any preschooler's library, whether he's a city or a country duckling!

Read other reviews of Look Left, Look Right, Look Left Again by clicking on the banner below.


©2012- 2013 Adventures with Jude. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Pin It button on image hover