Ceora Brown LIBR 262A

Materials for Children 0-4

65) The Little Red Hen [Board Book] by Byron Barton

Barton, Byron. The Little Red Hen [Board Book]. HarperCollins,  1993. 32 pages. ISBN: 978-0-694-00999-2.

An old Russian folktale has been condensed into this small board book. The illustrations are collage-like cutouts on top of solid primary colors for the background. The text is bold and simple words tell the story in simple steps. Every image is labeled with text, and simple two-word phrases are repeated to  introduce children to dialogue. The story includes a little red hen who believes that her friends–a pig, a duck, and a cat–will help her plant and harvest seeds. But, when the little red hen asks for help all of her friends repeatedly reply: “Not I” in their unique animal voices. Even though the hen’s friends refuse to help her plant the seeds, cut the stalks, thresh the wheat, grind the grains, make flour into bread, the little red hen does all the work herself. That is, until the bread was ready to eat. When little red hen asks “Who will help me eat this bread? All her friends reply “I will”. The tables are turned,as the little red hen refuses to let her friends eat the bread that she  made all by herself. A great little read-aloud story about the true meaning of friendship. Children will learn that a friend should help others when they are in need. (Folklore Picture Book 1-6). No author/ illustrator website.

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50) The Three Bears by Byron Barton

Barton, Byron. The Three Bears. HarperCollins, 1991. 32 pages. ISBN: 0-06-020424-9.

Aesop’s tale of the Three Bears has been adapted into a very simple picture book.  Three bears are about to eat porridge in three different sized bowls: “a big bowl for Papa Bear,” “a medium sized bowl for Mama Bear,” “And a small bowl for Baby Bear.” This is a perfect book for preschoolers, because the tale teaches size differences–from big to small.  The illustrations are  very childlike, so children will relate to the cut-out images of the bears, and the trees in the background. There are few expressions of emotion illustrated in the face of characters, but their arm movements help express the dialogue of the text. Bright and bold colors are used without any black outlines–which allows the opposite colors to pop-out of the picture. The text is formatted into short phrases, with very simple wording. A great read for early literacy learners. (Folklore/Picture book 2-7) No author/illustrator website.

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