Richie's Picks: RED HAT
Richie's Picks: RED HAT by Lita Judge, Atheneum, March 2013, 40p., ISBN: 978-1-4424-4232-0
Oh, my gosh. RED HAT is so much fun and it does so many great things so well.
A story told through images and exuberant sounds, RED HAT is a tale of animal hijinks that begins with a knitted red hat that a child has left hanging to dry on a makeshift clothesline.
Baby Bear grabs the hat from the line and takes off. Back in my childcare center days, I would refer to these sorts of action-filled tales as "gross motor" books. We boys are really keen on them.
A wild rumpus ensues as the woodland creatures chase after and -- in some cases -- literally get caught up in the yarn from the hat as it steadily unravels. Finally, Mama Bear puts the kibosh on the festivities and Baby Bear guiltily returns the pile of yarn to the clothesline.
All is forgiven as the child sits down in the yard with a pair of knitting needles and the animals all gather round as the hat is recreated. This is what it is all about to me: this message of unconditional love and forgiveness and kindness. Just love it. It has just totally made my day.
The final illustration shows that everyone has gotten a wearable knitted gift.
A perfect story for employing dialogic reading strategies, RED HAT is an all-around gem of a book.
Richie Partington, MLIS
Richie's Picks http://richiespicks.com
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