Happy Hippo, Angry Duck

Book review by
Barbara Schultz, Common Sense Media
Happy Hippo, Angry Duck Book Poster Image
Funny book teaches little ones about feelings.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Sandra Boynton's funny book about moods teaches youngsters about different feelings and shows cartoon animal faces expressing those emotions. Parents can further engage little ones by having them point to animals who are "sad" and "worried," for example.

Positive Messages

Everyone feels sad or angry sometimes, and everyone's mood changes.

Positive Role Models & Representations

This cute rhyming book shows different feelings but doesn't have a plot or "characters."

Violence & Scariness
Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Sandra Boynton's Happy Hippo, Angry Duck has all the cute, engaging qualities that make this author/illustrator's books so appealing to very young children. The animal faces show a range of moods with broad, funny expressions, and the memorable, rhyming language includes just enough nonsense to make little kids laugh. This book teaches them about feelings and moods without actually expressing anything to make children sad, scared, or angry. Although the board book edition is ideal for children to handle themselves, the Kindle version used for this review is simple to navigate and allows adults to enlarge print areas for easy use.

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What's the story?

Popular author/illustrator Sandra Boynton uses funny cartoon animals to show different feelings. Pigs, cows, rabbits, dogs, and more show different feelings, from "amused" to "grumpy" to "sad." Like many of this author's charming books, HAPPY HIPPO, ANGRY DUCK uses entertaining, simple drawings with brightly colored solid backgrounds, rhymes, and a bit of nonsense to educate and entertain.

Is it any good?

Sandra Boynton's Happy Hippo, Angry Duck is cute, engaging, and endlessly appealing to very young children. The author/illustrator's silly rhymes mixed with bits of nonsense make her books great favorites with little ones, and the expressive, cartoony illustrations show clear emotions while amusing readers. The board-book edition is ideal for children to handle themselves, and the Kindle version used for this review is simple to navigate and allows adults to enlarge print areas for easy reading.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about feelings. Do you ever feel angry like the duck? What does your angry face look like?

  • What makes you feel happy?

  • One of the animals is worried. Can you find it? What kind of animal is that?

Book details

Themes & Topics

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