Parents' Guide to

A Parade of Elephants

By Jan Carr, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 3+

Sweet, cozy counting book teaches basic preschool concepts.

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Who doesn't love a parade of pastel-colored elephants that look tastily candy-colored and serve up a series of palatable lessons about basic preschool concepts? In A Parade of Elephants, author-illustrator Kevin Henkes showcases his knack for breaking a book idea into its simplest components so that it's both fun and accessible for the very young. The lessons are clear. The page that counts the five elephants separates each grouping of pachyderms into its own line in a numbered grid, so kids can easily point and count, practicing the one-to-one correspondence. He also easily weaves in the concepts of up/down, over/under, and in/out.

Henkes even manages to add wordplay to his spare and simple text, toying with the double meanings of the words "round" and "done." And he sneaks in an elevated literary flourish at the end when the elephants lift their trunks to trumpet, "scattering stars across the sky."

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