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I Want My Hat Back
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that I Want My Hat Back is a Caldecott Honor book by author-illustrator Jon Klassen, who won the Caldecott Medal for This Is Not My Hat and illustrated Extra Yarn, also a Caldecott Honor book. This one's a big hit with kids and grown-ups alike, with a repetitive motif climaxed by a definitive conclusion to the bear's problem (although the violence is not shown). Readers will find the bear's victory over the thief amusing, but the implication that the bear ate him could be disturbing for some younger kids.
What's the story?
A big bear's hat is gone and he wants it back. He asks other animals, one by one, \"Have you seen my hat?\" One by one they say no, until he realizes one of the animals was lying. (Kids can figure it out before the bear does.) Will that animal get away with his crime, or will the determined bear get his hat back -- and make the thief pay?
Is it any good?
I WANT MY HAT BACK is told entirely in dialogue and is a wonderful showcase for author-illustrator Jon Klassen's sly, deadpan humor. The low-key but determined bear gets what he wants in the end, and it doesn't look good for the thief.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about picture books. How do the pictures help tell the story?
What clue did you spot that showed who took the bear's hat?
Take a look at Jon Klassen's Extra Yarn. You'll find the bear in I Want My Hat Back makes a surprise appearance on one of the pages in that story.
Themes & Topics
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For kids who love picture books and humor
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.