Sunday, July 17, 2011

The TTLG 2011 Picture Book Celebration: Book one hundred and ninety-eight

Learning how to do something new almost always is a challenge. Very rarely are we able to do this new thing properly the very first time we try it. Recently I started learning how to play the violin, and I have learned that I need to have two things: patience and a willingness to practice.

In today's picture book you will meet a very small penguin who has to learn a similar lesson. He is not going to be a good swimmer the very first time he tries.

Marcus Pfister
Translated by Anthea Bell
Picture Book
For ages 4 to 6
NorthSouth, 1994, 978-1558583566
   Pete lives in a colony of penguins in the Antarctic, and he is the smallest of the young penguins. He is eager to grow up so that he can go swimming in the sea with the sleek and elegant adult penguins. He soon notices that on land all penguins waddle, even the adults. They are no better than he is at getting about on the snow and ice.
   Pete decides that he is going to find a way to move about on land that is more graceful. He practices flipper skating on the ice, and though he looks good, he often ends up landing “on the ground with a thump.” Then Pete meets Steve, a little bird, and he discovers that there is something else he cannot do. He cannot fly.
   Children will immediately identify with Pete, a “pint-sized” penguin who is a “good loser.” They will see that there are many things in life that take practice to make perfect, and that it is perfectly all right not to be good at something when you first start doing it.
   This is the first in a series of books about Penguin Pete. 

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