Monday, February 1, 2010

REVIEW: When I Grow Up

When I Grow Up
Louise, T.  (2007).  When I Grow Up.  New York:  harry n. abrams, inc.


Do any of you few, but dear readers recognize the name Tina Louise?  Cause you should.  She is one of the many celebs who has turned to writing children's books.

Does this help ring any bells?

Miss Tina seems to have found herself off the island and into the world of children's publishing.

Appetizer:  A possible read aloud for a career day for kindergartners (why oh why do we expect such wee little ones to consider jobs already?!), this picturebook shows various animals at work and considers human jobs that are similar.

The pages of the book follow the formula "If a [animal] can [activity], I can be a [somewhat related job title].  While I liked the repetition of the sentence construction, sometimes the connection between the animal doing their activity and the job done by a human was very difficult to get.  Very only-vaguely-really?-are-you-sure?-were-you-smoking-something? kinda related jobs.  Take for example, the monkey.  "If a monkey can be trained to care for the very sick, I can be a nurse!"
Is it common knowledge that monkeys are taking care of very sick people?  Was I missing out on this.  Were you keeping it a secret from me, blogosphere?  Cause I didn't know this.  And I don't really associate monkeys with nurses.  Am I alone in this?

And don't even get me started on, "If an elephant can shake hands with its trunk, I can be president of the United States."

Also, is it just me, but do the kids on the seem a little TOO excited? Their wide eyes are a little disturbing.

So, basically, I found this picturebook to be good for a laugh.  And I say that as an adult who is entertained by a lack of logic.  I probably wouldn't highlight this book with the wee little ones, unless a child already loved the book.

On the plus side, the book does include a lot of racial representation and it encourages children to think positively and believe they can achieve anything.

Dinner Conversation:

"If a spider can build a beautiful web,...when I grow up, I can be an architect!"

"If a firefly can glow in the dark, I can shine on the silver screen!"

"If an ant can leave its hill to explore, I can be an archaeologist!"

To Go with the Meal:

With writing (relatively) appropriate for kindergartners, a teacher could incorporate this book into a lesson on careers.

Another route, would be to focus on the facts that are shared about various animals.  A teacher could encourage a student to pick their favorite animal out of the group and then the teacher could encourage the student to draw a picture of that animal while the  teacher finds another picturebook that features that animal or shares a few more facts about that creature.

Tasty Rating:  !!



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