Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Reading with my Kids-Knuffle Bunny

I've heard a lot about Knuffle Bunny by Mo Williams but it is a popular book and therefor difficult to find a copy of at the Library. A few weeks ago I saw it sitting on a display and made a bee line to it so I could snatch it up.
The book instantly became a hit with Red. When we left the library that day we headed to run some more errands, one of which was about an hour away. A few minutes down the road Red, who had a stack of library books he was reading on his lap, asked me if we could go home so I could read this book to him. He held up Knuffle Bunny. The whole hour long car ride he kept asking me if we were almost home because he wanted me to read the book to him. When we pulled into Costco he started crying, "no! I don't want the store! I want to read stories!!" He was pretty upset so we sat in the car and read the book.
Knuffle Bunny is the tale of a pre-verbal toddler, Trixie along with her Knuffle Bunny, and her father who take a trip to the local laundromat. Trixie starts to throw a tantrum on the way home when she realizes that Knuffle Bunny has been left behind. Her father does not understand what she is throwing a tantrum about and gets frustrated. My favorite part of the story? When they get home the mom knows instantly what the problem is.
I thought Williams did an excellent job at capturing Trixie's attempts to communicate with her father. "Aggle flaggle klabble!" When that did not work the tantrum just mounted until she was bawling and going boneless. What parent has not been there?
The other night after reading to Red I was downstairs when I heard him talking. I walked to the bottom of the stairs and asked him if he needed something? "Nope. I'm reading." It was then that I realized he was saying "Aggle flaggle klabble!"
The illustrations in the book are laid over black and white photographs. This is what really caught Red's attention when he first looked at it. It also is great because as we read I can pause and we can talk about what we see in the photos and illustrations.

Since Knuffle Bunny was such an instant hit with Red I got onto the library's online catalog and put a hold on Knuffle Bunny Too. We just picked it up yesterday and Red has been carrying both books around all day. Trixie is very verbal now and taking Knuffle Bunny to school. Problems ensue when, gasp, one of her classmates has a Knuffle Bunny too.

Mo Williams' blog


Jill said...

ooooh...We LOVE Knuffle Bunny at our house. My favorite line aside from "aggle flabble klabble," is "she went boneless."

We also really love Mo Willems' pigeon books.

wisteria said...

Knuffle Bunny is a hit in my school. I taught at a different elementary school when it first came out and I had to buy it. Now at this school, it is never on the shelf..always out. You might be interested to know that Columbia University Teachers Writing and
Reading Workshops use this book when they conduct their prestigious workshops for certified teachers.

I think Trixie can't understand why her Dad doesn't understand her when her Mom always does. Somehow kids share in this "first speech" and it is natural to kindergarteners, but harder for adults to understand why the book is soooooo successful. Whatever they like is ok with me.
Great blogging topic.