Flora and the Penguin
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Flora and the Penguin is the follow-up to Molly Idle's Caldecott Honor Book Flora and the Flamingo. Like the first book, it's a wordless story that follows young Flora and she teams up with a bird in a graceful duet, but this time it's on skates in a cold, icy landscape. With loads of charm and a range of emotions (happy, angry, worried, sad, suspicious, stubborn, happy again), there's plenty of story to tell out loud or for kids to "read" on their own. It's clearly another winner.
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What's the Story?
Flora goes for a skate on natural outdoor ice, and suddenly a penguin pops out of a watery hole in the ice. She finds the bird a perfect partner for pair skating. They do all their graceful moves in unison until the penguin tries a spin and plunges plunges back through the hole. Soon it pops back up with a fish in its beak for Flora. She accepts it but then tosses it back in the hole, angering the penguin. So Flora removes a skate and uses her pom-pom-tipped shoelace as a fishing line. They work together to catch the fish, patch up their friendship, and return to skating happily together.
Is It Any Good?
Like Flora and the Flamingo, the delightful FLORA AND THE PENGUIN says a whole lot without using any words. Author-illustrator Molly Idle show these two just-met friends going through a range of emotions as they play together -- and apart -- on (and under) the ice. Kids will relate to the push-pull fight-and-make-up nature of many playdates.
This book's pastel blue-and-white palette is as perfect for a winter skating story as previous outing's pastel pink-and-white was for its summer swimming story. And once again, well-placed flaps add dimension to shifting emotions and help drive the narrative. Here' hoping Flora has some more fun in mind for spring and autumn!
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about free play and making friends. Have you ever made a new friend on the playground or at a park?
What do you think about wordless picture books? Are they as fun as a story with words? What turning points do you see in the story -- when one of the characters does something that changes the way the story's going?
How do you think Flora and the Penguin compares with Flora and the Flamingo? Which do you like better? How are they similar? How are they different?
- Author: Molly Idle
- Illustrator: Molly Idle
- Genre: Picture Book
- Topics: Sports and Martial Arts, Book Characters, Friendship, Great Girl Role Models, Ocean Creatures, Wild Animals
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Chronicle Books
- Publication date: September 30, 2014
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 3 - 5
- Number of pages: 40
- Available on: Nook, Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Last updated: July 12, 2017
Our Editors Recommend
Flora and the Flamingo
Girl makes a feathered friend in whimsical, wordless outing.
A Ball for Daisy
Wordless story of dog's ball loss mirrors kids' emotions.
Wildly imaginative wordless book celebrates art and drawing.
For kids who love picture books and animal stories
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