Blueberries for Sal



Gentle story keeps preschoolers absorbed.

What parents need to know

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there is just enough suspense and humor to hold a preschooler's attention. The art (though black and white) pulls children into the story and makes events easy to understand and discuss.

Kids say

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What's the story?

What happens when Little Sal and Little Bear mistakenly trade mothers? When Sal goes out with her mother to pick blueberries, a mix-up causes an unexpected adventure. Robert McCloskey's gentle, engaging story keeps preschoolers absorbed as Mrs. Bear meets Little Sal and Little Bear surprises Sal's mom. Today's audience, expecting color, might find the the black-and-white illustrations a little disappointing.


Is it any good?


This humorous, entertaining book for preschoolers is an easygoing tale with just enough suspense to make it interesting. Robert McCloskey's text and illustrations blend perfectly with the mix of characters to tell a story that tickles the imagination. The full-page illustrations make it easy for children to understand the emotions of the characters.

The idea of a little girl and a bear cub each following the wrong mother appeals to preschoolers' sense of humor. But beyond the entertainment value, the story provides some lessons for children. Subtly showing the kinship of humans and animals, McCloskey closely parallels the stories of Little Bear and Sal. This is an excellent read-aloud.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the events in the story. Why did Little Sal wander off and lose track of her mother?" and They also can talk about bears: Why do bears need to store food for the winter?

Book details

Author:Robert McCloskey
Illustrator:Robert McCloskey
Genre:Family Life
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Penguin Group
Publication date:December 31, 1969
Number of pages:55
Publisher's recommended age(s):2 - 4

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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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Adult Written byLayneE September 20, 2010

So enjoyable, too bad it has changed :-(

Since the printing of the books has been expanded, the original blue text has changed. That makes me so sad! Obviously, the switch from blue to black ink has saved a lot of money, but it totally takes away from the original concept.


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