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Page history last edited by RichiesPicks 10 months, 1 week ago

24 August 2021 IF YOU WERE AN ELEPHANT by Leslie Staub and Richard Jones, ill., Putnam, July 2021, 32p., ISBN: 978-1-5247-4134-1


“I’ve seen a front porch swing, heard a diamond ring

I’ve seen a polka dot railroad tie

But I done seen about everything

When I see an elephant fly”

-- Cliff Edwards, from the Dumbo soundtrack (1941)


“If you were an elephant,

you’d be the biggest animal 

who lives on the land.

You’d have ears big as tent flaps,

skin thick as blankets.

You’d turn the next page

with your trunk, not your hand.”


IF YOU WERE AN ELEPHANT is a joyful exploration of elephant-hood. It could well have you wishing and imagining that you were chillin’ on the savanna instead of stuck in your home/school/workplace.


Elephants are herd animals. The engaging, digitally-edited paintings by illustrator Richard Jones depict a community of elephants, with the spotlight on a youngin, as the herd eats, drinks, swims, takes naps and mud baths, and encounters other critters--some docile and others predatory. 


The average young child is intrigued by huge creatures like dinosaurs, whales, and elephants. IF YOU WERE AN ELEPHANT is a stellar piece of nonfiction for four-to-eight year-olds. The text and illustrations clearly describe and depict a broad variety of everyday elephant behaviors. The backmatter consists of an excellent page of “Amazing Facts about Elephants such as:


Elephants spend up to sixteen hours a day eating. They eat up to six hundred pounds of food and can drink as much as fifty gallons of water in a day.”


So cue up Miss Mary Mack and that elephant jumping over the fence. Choreograph an elephant dance or march. Calculate how many kids it takes to reach six hundred pounds worth. And then read them this fun, fact-filled picture book.


Richie Partington, MLIS

Richie's Picks http://richiespicks.pbworks.com






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