Wednesday, September 03, 2008
A Possible Read-aloud Title?
A few years ago while killing some time during the lunch periods at a school where I was appearing, I listened to the librarian do a read-aloud event with a kindergarten class. She used some kind of instructive picture book about nature because, well, this was school and at school it's appropriate to be instructive.
I think Bee-wigged by Cece Bell could easily find a home with librarians looking for read-aloud titles. Bee-wigged is the story of a misunderstood bee who, while wearing a wig, is mistaken for a child. All his good qualities make him a big hit at school until his secret comes out. Then a talking guinea pig offers up a lesson in acceptance.
This is a story with an overt lesson for adults and a sense of the ridiculous for kids. A bee at school! A talking guinea pig! A talking guinea pig who...Well, I'm not one to give an entire story away.
Bee-wigged's really strong point is its artwork. Jerry Bee is a simple, striking image that I suspect would lend itself to art projects for preschool story hour. (Hmmm. Maybe some story hour art projects at the author's website would be a neat idea.) The text is kept to a minimum, giving the pictures pride of place on each page. Visually it seems like a good choice to hold up in front of a group of children sitting on a rug listening to a story.
By the way, Bee-wigged will be published in November.