Go, Dog. Go!

Book review by
Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media
Go, Dog. Go! Book Poster Image
Go, new readers. Go!

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Early readers will be bombarded with prepositions: in, out, around, over, under, etc. Colors are also reinforced for the younger set. And it's always nice to get a reminder about what you need to do at a red light and a green light. The back cover boasts that the book features 75 different words total, and there's plenty of repetition to help them stick in kids' heads.

Positive Messages

Even dogs set aside time for work, play, and celebrations.

Positive Role Models & Representations

One dog is not very complimentary of another dog's hats -- until she sports a pretty outrageous party hat.

Violence & Scariness

Dogs playing tennis on top of a flying balloon are told, "Do not play up there. Go down."

Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Go, Dog. Go! is an early reader book first published in 1961 that stays in print because it really gets kids reading. The back cover boasts that kids will learn 75 new words, and there's lots of action and repetition to really make them stick.

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What's the story?

Dogs of all combinations and colors -- even green! -- are on the go here. They're up, down, going around in a Ferris wheel, working, playing ball, diving in water, hitting tennis balls atop a big balloon, and driving all over town in perfectly petite cars. The suspense builds as a troop of cars speeds toward a mysterious tree. At the top of the tree a big dog party is in full swing. "What a dog party!" It prompts a pink poodle to don a party hat flamboyant enough to finally impress the finicky yellow dog.

Is it any good?

This is a total gem of a book for kids getting ready to read. There's no break in the action, lots of visual cues (can't miss the green dog on the yellow tree), and plenty of silliness to keep kids going. It's hard to resist shouting, "I do not like that hat! Good-by!"

Kids may not read all 64 pages the first time out, but since the words repeat and build on each other it's an easy confidence builder to add words every day. And the big reward: "A dog party! A big dog party!" And of course one outrageous party hat.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about where the dogs go: up, down, over, under, around and around, and around again. Write these great words out on a chalkboard or a big piece of posterboard and cut out pictures of animals or people going in all different directions.

  • What's fun about a book with dog characters?  Do you think the cake they eat would taste yummy or like dog food?

  • Why do you think the yellow dog doesn't like most of the pink poodle's hats? Do you think the yellow dog is being nice or a rude when he says he doesn't like them?

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