okay, okay, preschool book review week starts in earnest with an old chestnut that i feel gets overlooked nowadays — robert mccloskey’s make way for ducklings. it isn’t hip. it isn’t trendy. it isn’t cool.
but boy, is it a great, great book for preschoolers.
the story is one that most little kids can comprehend — duck parents are looking for a good place to raise a family. they finally find one. the dad has to go away. the mom teaches the kids and takes them on a tumultuous walk. dad comes home. everyone quacks happily ever after.
i cannot pick up this book without a few things happening.
1) i imitate an irish policeman whenever i read the voices of the cops in the book. (for you bugs bunny fans out there: “hey clancy, let’s take the boys and surrrrround the house!”)
2) i dissolve into laughter, along with my kids, whenever i have to read the ducklings’ names (lack, mack, quack, pack, oh, who the hell knows them all, i just know they rhyme). and:
3) we end up reading it twice in a row. at least.
the brown-tone drawings are absolutely stunning, earning this bad boy a caldecott. no, they just don’t write them like this anymore.
admittedly, i am a mom who enjoys the hip books; but i must confess that, in the same way i am beginning to rediscover the old, corny Disney movies (hayley mills, anyone?) and enjoying them, i am discovering older storybooks from my childhood, wistfully remembering how it took me longer to wise up and become the cynical chick i am today.
maybe if we read more mccloskey books, my kids will stay younger longer.
Make Way for Ducklings