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If You Take a Mouse to School
Author: Laura Numeroff; Illustrator: Felicia Bond
Pages: 32
Publisher/Date: Laura Geringer Books/HarperCollins/2002
ISBN: 0060283289
Age Levels: Pre-K-8

Book Review

The tiny, playful mouse from If you Take a Mouse to the Movies and If You Give a Mouse a Cookie is back. This time he ventures to school in a lunchbox. Once there he does a "little math" (including differential equations) and spells "a word to two" (precocious and mercurial), tries a science experiment (with colorful and messy results), builds a little mouse house (complete with garage and balconies), and writes a book (Goodnight Mouse). (Obviously this is a mouse who belongs in a gifted program.) On the way home he plays a game of soccer, shoots a few hoops, and . . . forgets his snack (which he left in the lunchbox) . . . necessitating a return to school.

Felicia Bond's lively pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations are filled with many small and humorous details. The mouse's gestures and expressions are superb.

Classroom Use: Suitable as a read-alone as well as a read-aloud. We used the book in a second grade classroom to teach cause and effect (if. . .then).

In another classroom, a second/third combo, we read the book aloud then gave the children the writing prompt "If you give a __noun__ a __noun__ . . .." One young author penned a particularly funny story about giving a snake a soda (which caused it to burp—of course!—and set in motion a whole chain of comical events).

The book could also be used to teach or reinforce the reading strategy of making predictions. Check out a wonderfully detailed lesson plan at readwritethink.

Don't miss this brisk, bouncy mouse tale. Highly recommended.

Reviewed by the teachers at Education Oasis
©2003 Education Oasis http://www.educationoasis.com


About the Author

Born in 1953, the youngest of three girls, Laura Numeroff grew up in Brooklyn, New York, surrounded by art, music, and books. By age nine, Laura started writing her own stories and drew pictures to go with them. She also spent a great deal of time reading and took weekly trips to the public library—which was about five blocks from her house. At that time, her favorite possessions were her microscope, a box of sixty-four crayons, and her library card.

At age fifteen, Laura decided to follow in her sister's footsteps and become a fashion designer. However, during her last semester in college, Laura decided to take a class in writing and illustrating books for children. She ended up graduating with a degree and a publishing contract for her first book! She has been writing now for 27 years and has written 16 books for children. Her best-selling "If You Give a ..." series has received critical acclaim and has become a favorite for children of all ages. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California. Be sure to visit the author's website.


Illustrator

Felicia Bond is the New York Times best-selling illustrator of many beloved books for children, including the If You Give a ... series, written by Laura Numeroff. She is also the author and illustrator of The Halloween Play, The Day It Rained Hearts, Tumble Bumble, and the Poinsettia books. She lives in Austin TX, and Santa Fe, NM.