________________ CM . . . . Volume XIII Number 6 . . . . November 10, 2006

cover I Spy a Pumpkin. (Scholastic Reader, Level 1).
 

Jean Marzollo. Photographs by Walter Wick.
New York, NY: Scholastic (Distributed in Canada by Schlastic Canada), 2006.
32 pp., pbk., $5.50.
ISBN 0-439-73863-6.

Kindergarten-grade 1 / Ages 5-6.

Review by Dave Jenkinson.
 

*** /4 

excerpt: 

I spy
 
an arrowhead,
 
a ring,
 
a key,

a piece to a puzzle,
 
a trophy,
 
and a G.
 

Despite its name, I Spy a Pumpkin’s link to Halloween does not obviously continue past the first pair of facing pages. Part of the “Scholastic Reader” series, the book is  categorized by the publisher as a “Level 1" book indicating that it contains “Simple words and short sentences for the newest readers.” If any of the book’s 10 full colour “busy” photos look familiar, it’s because they are taken from four of Wick’s books which were originally published between 1992 and 1996. The design of the first 20 pages sees a page containing a sentence of text facing a full page photo illustration. The sentence, which contains an internal rhyme, invites the beginning reader to find from four to six objects that are somewhere in the photo. As part of the text, there is also an illustration of each object to be found so that, even if a child cannot read the words, as long as s/he understands the book’s concept, s/he can participate in the book’s activity. The book’s last half dozen pages are Marzollo’s “riddles” which draw attention to words, not images. Examples would be: 

    I spy two matching words.

    Yellow airplane
     
    green-and-yellow dress
     
    sets of four 

    or

    I spy two words that start with the letters TR 

      lion’s mane 

      wooden tree 

      trophy.
       

     As an early introduction and motivator to reading, I Spy a Pumpkin adequately serves its role. 

Recommended. 

Dave Jenkinson teaches courses in children’s and YA literature in the Faculty of Education, the University of Manitoba.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

NEXT REVIEW |TABLE OF CONTENTS FOR THIS ISSUE - November 10, 2006.

AUTHORS | TITLES | MEDIA REVIEWS | PROFILES | BACK ISSUES | SEARCH | CMARCHIVE | HOME