Thursday, September 17, 2015

A Chicken Followed Me Home! Questions and Answers about a Familiar Fowl by Robin Page

When I was a kid, I used to go visit my aunt on her farm in Michigan for a while each summer.  I had lots of chores, such as picking strawberries, corn and tomatoes and gathering the eggs in the chicken house.  I really disliked going into the chicken house but I liked getting the eggs.  One reason is because they tasted so good at breakfast and the other reason is that I could sell all the extra strawberries, corn, tomatoes and eggs at a little roadside stand I set up AND I got to keep the profits.

I'm a Brooklyn born and bred girl, soI have to be honest and say one chicken looked like another to me.  I didn't really know anything about them and since I wasn't going to become a farmer, I didn't worry about it.  Maybe I would have felt differently if I had read a book like A Chicken Followed Me Home!

The premise of this book is simple - what would you do if a chicken followed you home and you didn't know anything about chickens?   You would begin by asking questions about chickens and that is exactly what this book does.  The questions are asked by an unknown, unnamed narrator, whose sneaker-clad leg is all we see of her/him and it could be anyone, you, me, any youngster with an interest in chickens.  Each two page spread asks a question about chickens and then gives the answer.  Questions from What will my chicken eat? to What kind of chicken is it?  to What if I want baby chickens?  and Who will take care of the chicks? are asked and answered in a short paragraph, giving young readers just enough information for them to process without overwhelming them.

You might think a book about chickens wouldn't be interesting, but this is one that is fun and humorous, even as it provides lots of information.

The bright, spare digitally-rendered illustrations, done by author Robin Page, are serious and playful at the same time, with lots of white space that pulls the eye to picture and allows for really focused attention to the details included in each image.  I like to think of white space as the area where conversations and questions happen between young and old readers.

Page also includes a double page spread called More Chicken Questions that extends what was learned in the main part of the book.  Here, readers will discover why chickens have combs, or what happens inside a fertilized egg and there is a brief bibliography for youngsters interested in further reading.

This is a delightful book that not only science minded kids are sure to enjoy, but so will future farmers and egg lovers everywhere.

This book is recommended for kids age 5+
This book was borrowed from the NYPL

This is book 9 of my 2015 Nonfiction Picture Book Reading Challenge hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy

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