Perfect Picture Book Friday-My Little Sister Ate One Hare

Tammi Sauer had an excellent post for PiBoIdMo (Picture Book Idea Month) this week. She talked about ways to structure a picture book and gave examples of different ways to frame a story. I headed straight to the library with the list of books she gave as examples. One of the structures she talked about is Cumulative-Each time a new event occurs, the previous events in the story are repeated. Today, I am happily reviewing one of her great examples of a cumulative tale.

My Little Sister Ate One Hare

Written by Bill Grossman

Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes

Random House-Dragonfly 1998

Ages: 3-8

Themes: Counting, Math

Synopsis: (From School Library Journal) A counting book that talks about swallowing slimy creatures, ant’s underpants, and regurgitation, and has outrageous illustrations is a guaranteed success with the primary-grade crowd. The cumulative rhyme has the irreverence of Silverstein or Prelutsky and the art has the rollicking humor of Lane Smith. A young magician, the narrator’s sister, puts on a show, eating one hare, two snakes, etc. She isn’t grossed out by consuming any bat or shrew, but give her nutritious food and watch out.

Opening: My little sister ate 1 hare.
We thought she’d throw up then and there.
But she didn’t.
My little sister ate 2 snakes.
She ate 2 snakes, for heaven sakes!
She ate 2 snakes. She ate 1 hare.
We thought she’d throw up then and there.
But she didn’t.
My little sister ate 2 ants.
She even ate their underpants.
She ate 2 snakes. She ate 1 hare.
We thought she’d throw up then and there.
But she didn’t.

Resources: (from Random House) Have students imagine what she might eat on another day and start a page for the story. 1. Think of another strange and silly thing the little sister could eat. 2. Choose a number (no higher than 20) to describe how many of that animal she will eat. Write the number on top of the paper. 3. Now draw a picture of the little sister surrounded by the correct number of animals you have chosen. (from other sources) A comprehensive Family Literacy Guide HERE. Math activities HERE. Literacy with math Powerpoint HERE.

Why I Like This Book: I am a fan of cumulative, rhyming text and this book gets it all right. It is a counting book that will have kids giggling. This perfect read aloud invites audience participation.The illustrations are hilarious, also. The little sister’s mouth is open WIDE, and her face has a “no big deal that I’m eating bats, mice and shrews” expression that is priceless. As any humorous book should…this book has a special little twist at the end that will bring the biggest laugh of all.

Susanna Leonard Hill features Perfect Picture Book Friday on her blog. This is a wonderful resource if you are wondering what books to give as gifts, needing material for a lesson, or just looking for a great book to read. Here is a list of books by category. Each book listed has a link to a review, information about that book, and resources for activities. There is also an alphabetical list.

25 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday-My Little Sister Ate One Hare

  1. Wasn’t Tammi’s post amazing? I bookmarked it immediately and am so glad you chose to review one of them today!

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    • Yes, it was amazing, and I’m going to try it. I heard her speak at a conference last fall. Then I took a breakout session where she talked about writing PB’s….talk about great! I would love to get in a room with her with a couple of my manuscripts and get her input! Oh well, I can dream, can’t I?

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  2. Tammi’s post came at just the right time for me because I’ve been compiling my own list of books with alternative story structures. This one looks hilarious and I’ll definitely add it to my library list. Thanks, Penny!

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  3. Oh my God! I wish I could write something as clever and hilarious like this, Penny! Can’t wait to check this one out at my kids’ school library! Thanks for sharing it here today!

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  4. I’m glad your shared this book, as an example of what a Cumulative story is. This is a great example. I also jotted down Tammi’s thoughts. Nice way to try something new. The rhyming is excellent in this one.

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    • Hi, Catherine. You will love this one. It fits your personality and mine as well….I think we are kindred spirits when it comes to quirkiness! And I mean that as a compliment of the highest level.

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    • Isn’t that a nice touch. And it happens several times throughout, as the illustrations depict the little sister as a magician on a stage with a spotlight on her as folks look on in horrified surprise! Now you really can’t wait to read it, huh?

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  5. I loved that post by Tammi too, Penny, it was really illuminating and inspiring. This book looks like tons of fun! I can imagine it would be VERY popular with the kid set! Thanks for sharing it here 🙂

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