A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this wonderful story of animals on a sledding joy ride is wordless except for the sounds of walking across snow ("scrinch scrunch scrinch"), curiosity ("Hrmm?") and the squeals and roars of delight by the animals who climb on for an exciting ride. This is a perfect winter bedtime read or a good one to take along on trip to the snow.
What's the story?
A red sled left by a child outside a house in the snow is taken for a joy ride by a bear, who is joined by a rabbit, a moose, two raccoons, a porcupine, and a mouse. The only words are sounds -- of curiosity (\"Hrmmm?\"), feet walking across the snow (\"scrinch scrunch scrinch\") and exclamations of the animals, such as the rabbit's \"Yeoeeeeee,\" the bear's \"Rooooooo\" and the mouse's \"Whoa.\" After the overloaded sled crashes and dumps all the animals out onto the snow, the bear politely returns the sled. The twist is that when the kid finds bear footprints leading away from the sled, he (or she?) invites the animals on another sled ride. \"Wheeeeee.\"
Is it any good?
This totally original, fun book accomplishes a lot of storytelling without using conventional words. Toddlers and pre-readers will have no trouble following what happens, and it's loads of fun every step ("scrinch scrunch scrinch") of the way. The watercolor and pencil illustrations are bright and engaging, and the animals' freewheeling delight is infectious.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what it feels like to sled. Is it more like riding a rollercoaster or a body board? Why is it fun even when you crash and tumble out?
What do you think about animals sneaking around at night, playing with something made for humans? Do you ever imagine your dog or cat playing with your toys at night?
How did the author use her art to make you feel the cold snow and use made-up words to help you feel the animals' excitement? Do make sounds like that when you play?
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