Digby Takes Charge

Digby Takes Charge by Caroline Jayne Church.

Digby is a new sheep dog who has never herded sheep before.  But how hard can it be?  There are only six of them.  But the sheep don’t like Digby’s style.  He tries growling at them, and they ignore him.  Then he tries using force.  Nothing, in fact the sheep are beginning to smile.  More force?  Still nothing.  It isn’t until the other farm animals tell Digby the secret of how things work on this farm that he is able to get the sheep to listen to him.  Anyone know the magic word?

Adults will see the ending coming from the start, but I guarantee even adults will be shocked enough to laugh out loud at the force that Digby uses on the sheep.  My sons were in hysterics at how funny it was.  The illustrations are very accessible to children with their cartoon-like, friendly style.  In fact, the cover alone sells this book.

I highly recommend this book for reading to active preschool classes.  The illustrations will shout clearly across the room and the surprises in the middle of the story will have even the most restless little ones listening in no time.  Great for that final book of a storytime that much catch their attention.  It is also a good one for adding to dog or sheep storytimes.

20 Hungry Piggies

20 Hungry Piggies: a number book by Trudy Harris, illustrated by Andrew N. Harris.

This picture book begins with the comforting words of the This Little Piggy rhyme.  But that’s just how it begins.  From there we have skydiving piggies, ones that play music, and several who cook.  It is great fun.  Adding to the fun are the illustrations where children can find the wolf hidden in each picture until he decides to pounce. 

More than just a basic counting book to 20, this book talks in terms of first, second, third little piggies, offering preschoolers new terms for numbers.  I appreciated the way it started with the traditional rhyme and then went on from there.

Share this in a counting unit with preschoolers or kindergarteners.  You could also share it in a piggy story time.  But it will be best on someone’s lap or in a small group where children can see the pictures closely enough to find the hidden wolf.