Monday, May 14, 2012

Click, Clack, Moo

Thanks to Haley Bathiany  for the research on the illustrator! 

Cronin, D. (2000). Click,clack, moo: Cows that type. New York: Scholastic Inc.

I chose Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type for my first picture book selection. The cover in itself was enough to make me want to pick this book off of the shelf. I recently inherited this book from a retiring teacher, so I was thrilled to find it on the list of recommended picture books. I teach in a very rural area where many of my students live on or near farms. I know my students would love this book because it would open up their imaginations to think "what are MY farm animals doing out there all day?" 

Betsy Lewin did a fantastic job on the illustrations in this book and her method of creating the pictures is very unique and creative. She begins each page with the black lines in watercolor and then photocopies that page. She then adds color to the photocopied page, and then photocopies that page. She explains how this method allows her to get as many copies as she wants and she can really experiment with the color, choosing finishes that she likes best. Her images really capture the essence of this story. 

This book brilliantly uses personification to give a number of farm animals human qualities. Farmer Brown is the only human character in the story. He finds himself in a stand-off with his farm animals when they get their hands on his typewriter and begin to make demands. It is a lighthearted story, and it is lots of fun! 

One of my favorite aspects of the story is how the author uses foreshadowing to set the stage for another book, where the ducks get a hold of the typewriter and have some fun of their own. The words "click, clack, QUACK" are all you need to read to know the story is not over yet. 

What are some requests animals on a farm or in your home might ask you for if they had a voice?

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