Sunday, February 12, 2012

Hippo Says Excuse Me by Michael Dahl with illustrations by Oriol Vidal

There are two words that Hippo knows really well: Excuse me! Hippo is used to others having to make room: at the bus stop, in an elevator, on the sidewalk. Excuse me is the polite way to get others to make room. But is there room for everyone?

I could tell from the cover that
the bright colours make this story come alive. There are bold blocks of solid colours, which appeal to younger readers, as well as detailed illustration on the animals. The animals had great facial expressions, like the ostrich on the elevator's unimpressed eyes or the way the panda on the bus had cheeks that puffed out. A small detail that I loved was that this isn't a story about the hippo being "too big" or the size being an unheard of problem. In many of the pictures there were larger animals than the hippo: the giraffe on the bus, the moose in the elevator. The 'problem' (or the discomfort) just comes from when they all try to use the same thing at the same time, just as when too many people crowd onto a bus. There are a number of ways that this book can be used to build literacy skills with children, from reading the repeated words and pointing out the large print letters to pretending to walk like a hippo to talking about concepts like size and manners. I'm looking forward to checking out the other books in the series.

I received a review copy from NetGalley courtesy of Capstone.

Find it at IndieBound.

Read it with:
Penguin Says "Please" by Michael Dahl
Mouse Says "Sorry" by Michael Dahl
Bear Says "Thank You" by Michael Dahl
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip C. Stead
Terrible, Awful, Horrible Manners! by Beth Bracken

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