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Kid’s Corner: Hopper and Wilson Fetch a Star

hopprI’ve been thinking a lot about bullying in the past two weeks, after the mom of one of E’s preschool friends told me about a scary bullying incident directed toward her 9 year-old daughter. So it was a nice change for me to shift gears and think about the positive and healthy elements of children’s friendships through this month’s book selection: Hopper and Wilson Fetch a Star by Maria van Lieshout.

I love Hopper and Wilson and so does E. We first encountered this cute elephant-mouse duo in their first book, Hopper and Wilson. They are cute, cuddly, adventurous, and help teach young children about the value of appreciating what you have in front of you.

In Hopper and Wilson Fetch a Star the duo sets off on a paper airplane to find the perfect star to bring home for a nightlight (or a lantern for nighttime adventures says Wilson). Along the way they find stars that are too big, not bright enough, too pointy for holding, and too sparkly. They find their perfect star while taking a break on the moon. Unfortunately, Wilson is too excited to wait for Hopper to finish his nap and steps off the dark side of the moon to get the star himself. The duo is separated (this has happened before), but this time it’s Wilson’s turn to get lost. Of course this is a kid’s books so all is well that ends well. Wilson uses their perfect star to navigate back to Hopper and the two friends reunite and learn that the stars in the sky are “perfect exactly where they belong. With each other.”

As I mentioned earlier, I love the Hopper and Wilson books. They are simply but beautifully illustrated with bright colors. Through their adventures, the pair learns to be appreciative of both their home and their relationship to each other. The messages are easy for young children to understand. These are 5-star books for me, but what did E think? Here is her review…

Me: What did you think about this book?
E: I liked it.
M: What did you like about it?
E: That there was a glowing star.
M: What do you think about Hopper and Wilson?
E: I like them because they help each other and they always go with each other. They are best friends.

This was her favorite page of the book:

hopperhug
And since we created stars to help her rate books (with the magic of Perler beads), she rated this book as being worth “four and a half” stars out of five.

Hopper and Wilson are great books for this developmental age since they introduce the idea of healthy friendships at a age when children are engaging in more social and collaborative play and when they are just starting to compare themselves with others. There are lots of great friend duos in children’s literature. Some of my favorites are:

elephant and piggyElephant and Piggy. Mo Williams is a favorite in our house and his Elephant and Piggy books are no exception. His books are great for kids and parents. There’s nothing worse that having to read a book you hate but your child loves, over and over and over again. Mo Williams books are genius because they contain humor that is specifically directed toward adults but in stories that are appealing to children.

 

 

 

 

frog&toadFrog and Toad: The frog and toad books are wonderful books by Arnold Lobel from the 1970s that contain short stories that are often humorous. Frog and Toad are Friends won the Caldecott Honor and it was also listed as one of the top 100 Picture Books of all time by School Library Journal.

 

 

 

 

 

a-visitor-for-bear-illustrationBear and Mouse from Bonnie Becker’s series. Bear and Mouse first meet after Bear puts up a “No Visitor’s” sign in front of his home. Mouse may be a poor listener because he shows up again and again, but he eventually melts the heart of the grumpy bear who realizes that friendship is important. Bear and mouse meet again in subsequent books: A Library for Bear, A Bedtime for Bear, The Sniffles for Bear, and a Birthday for Bear. Poor mouse is very patient with bear but through his kindness, he teaches grumpy bear a number of lessons. Beautifully illustrated and often humorous, these books are fun to read to little ones.

Have you come across any great friendship duos? Which books would you recommend?

Want to try Hopper and Wilson Fetch a Star for your child? Find the book here:Hopper and Wilson Fetch a Star

3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Mike #

    We have a 5 1/2 yo daughter and, seemingly like you, focus a lot on stories that make a point in a way reachable by children. We also actively look for books that have girl characters in non-traditional roles to show through the story that girls can do anything. Four books I would recommend (and I’m really interested in your and E’s views of these) are:
    – Rosie Revere Engineer by Andrea Beaty which shows a girl working through engineering challenges and teaches perseverance.
    – The Elves and the Shoemaker by Lucy George which even though it is an old story teaches selflessness in very much a contemporary way.
    – Violet the Pilot by Steve Breen which teaches perseverance, working through bullying situations and making the right decisions.
    – What do you do with an Idea? by Kobi Yamada which teaches having confidence in your thoughts and ideas.

    Hope you and your readers like them.

    Like

    May 27, 2015
    • I love What do you with an Idea and will have to check out the others. They sound great and may be good selections for future reviews. I appreciate the recommendations. Emma just created her own stars that she wants to use for rating.

      Like

      May 27, 2015
      • Mike #

        You are most welcome (thank Dan!).

        Like

        May 28, 2015

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