A Funny Little Bird



Sweet fable has beautiful look and message.

What parents need to know

Educational value

This simple story shows the importance of camouflage and hiding to stay safe in the natural world.

Positive messages

Initially he's eager for attention, but the little bird soon learns that showing off only leads to trouble.

Positive role models

The bird finds actions are more important than appearances when it comes to friendship. Once he realizes the value of his talent for going unseen, he extends his aid to his friends.

Violence & scariness

The bird cultivates such a showy appearance that he draws the attention of a hungry fox. He escapes, and then protects a friend from a weasel. These predation scenes aren't violent, however.

Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the small, overlooked hero of A Funny Little Bird has a close encounter with a fox and a weasel, but all turns out well in the end. He often feels ignored and sometimes is teased, and begins the story without friends. By the story's end, however, his seeming weakness becomes his strength. 

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What's the story?

A funny little bird, seemingly invisible, is teased by the other birds because of the way he looks. Sad and lonely, he begins collecting colorful odds and ends to adorn himself with beautiful finds: brightly colored feathers, petals, and stems. Delighted with his new look, he struts and preens -- and quickly draws the attention of a fox. The bird discards all his treasures and hides, back to his old, barely visible self. But it dawns on him that going unseen isn't so bad. He can even help hide his friends when danger is near -- and he isn't so lonely anymore.



Is it any good?

The hero of A FUNNY LITTLE BIRD may feel he goes unnoticed, but he'll capture the attention of little ones in this visually arresting picture book. The striking illustrations by first-time author Jennifer Yerkes, a graphic artist, are both elegant and charming.
Sparse text allows the pictures to tell the story, which proves to be a fable about the importance of connecting with others rather than trying to control the spotlight. It's a terrific book for cuddling up and reading together, so both adult readers and their young listeners can enjoy the artwork. Kids will delight in finding the camouflaged bird on each spread.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how going unseen helps the little bird stay safe. Talk about other examples of how animals use camouflage for protection.
  • The little bird dresses up in treasures and enjoys showing off. Ask kids about their favorite dress-up clothes. How do they feel when they dress up?

Book details

Author:Jennifer Yerkes
Topics:Friendship, Misfits and underdogs, Science and nature
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Publication date:May 7, 2013
Number of pages:48
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 8
Available on:Hardback

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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