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Saturday, June 30, 2007

Looking for a Moose

Looking for a Moose
by Phyllis Root (Author),
Randy Cecil (Illustrator)

Have you ever seen a moose--
a long-leggy moose--
a branchy-antler, dinner-diving, bulgy-nose moose?
That's how the book starts, with a small band of kids embarking on a search for moose.

The rhythm, the meter, the build-up and the illustrations have made this book my favorite, and judging by her twinkle when asking me to read it to her, my baby's as well.

It is a very simple book. A bunch of kids and a little dog go looking for moose. They look in the woods first without much success, which makes them declare
We look and we look, but it's just no use.
We don't see any long-leggy moose.

They look in the swamp, on the mountains, everywhere and eventually they find "a moose and a moose and a moose", "so many moose"!

What I liked about this book:
  • the illustrator cleverly hides moose in each page that the band of moose-hunting children in the book miss (but the dog spots easily, apparently); older kids will have a blast "discovering" the hidden moose on each page
  • each page moves along with each category of moose they list at the beginning: long-leggy, branchy-antler, dinner-diving, bulgy-nose moose
  • moreover, it doubles as a counting book of sorts as there are a certain number of hidden moose of each category: one long-leggy moose, two dinner-diving moose, three branchy-antler moose...
  • there are enough repetitions of the common theme and words that it almost works like Eric Carle's classic Brown Bear book to develop prediction skills in toddlers around 2-3 years, even if they don't understand all the words and the illustrations


My 2-yr old loves the sing-song rhythm it carried, and with each read she would point to the kids in the page and talk about their boots and hats (words on the page) and so on.

Older kids (recommended for ages 4-8) would like descriptions like brambly-ambly, scrubby-shrubby bush and so on.

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