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Barbara Feldman

Willowdale (Ont.), Annick Press, 1991. 24pp, library binding, ISBN 1-55037-200-9 (library binding) $14.95, ISBN 1-55037-201-7 (paper) $4.95. CIP

Kindergarten to Grade 3/Ages 5 to 8
Reviewed by Terri MacLean

Volume 20 Number 1
1992 January

Stephen has a pet frog who goes everywhere with him. When his family goes to visit his grandparents at their farm, Stephen's frog goes along on the airplane. Unfortunately, the frog creates such havoc at the breakfast table that Stephen's father tells him his pet has to go. Sadly, Stephen trudges off through the bush until he finds a pond. After releasing his frog, Stephen sees that his frog has found a friend in the pond, so the story ends on a happy note.

The unusual thing about this delight­ful story is that it is told entirely without words. Feldman weaves the plot with beautiful applique' pictures. The illustrations not only are wonderful to look at for their interesting texture and design, but they also give details of the story in a carefully thought out manner. For instance, by observing the wing of an airplane in the illustration, the reader will realize that Stephen's family must travel some distance to visit his grand­parents.

Books such as this arc excellent tools for developing comprehension skills in children who are "word readers," because the wordless format of the book demands that they make inferences and predictions, draw conclusions, and pay attention to details, When 1 shared this book with a group 1 noticed that the children who are auditory rather than visual learners had trouble attending after the first few pages, but the children with highly developed visual skills remained enthralled throughout. It would be wonderful to have this in "big book" format.

Recommended for Primary grades, and for older children with language disorders.

Terri MacLean, Elora Junior Public School, Elora, Ont.
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