Thursday, April 26, 2012

Balloons Over Broadway

Thanks, Jennifer for this biography.
Sweet, M.  (2011).  Balloons over Broadway: The true story of the puppeteer of the Macy's Parade.  New York: Houghton Mifflin.

     In this wonderfully illustrated picture book and the  2012, NCTE Orbis picture book non -fiction award winner, Melissa Sweet presents the biography of Tony Sarg, a puppeteer who in 1928 created the first helium filled balloon for the Macy's Day Thanksgiving parade.  The author's writing style is expressed in direct, clear language with vivid details to help make the story interesting and easy for young readers to understand.  She also includes whimsical water color illustrations with collages to bring Mr. Sarg's biography to life.  The book is written in sequencial order, from Tony's childhood to his adult life.  I think young children would really appreciate how Tony invented a pulley device to feed the chickens that he could pull the cord from his bedroom so he could avoid waking up at 6:30 in the morning.  This book shows how one imaginative person can bring so much joy to all of our lives and this tradition has continued for 80 years.  I found this great resource which has templates to make puppets and connections to the story:
 This book would be an awesome resource to introduce biographies to younger students, from kindergarten to second grade. 
A picture from the author's website:

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