Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Mitten By: Jan Brett

The Mitten is a Ukrainian folktale.  It is about a boy who asks his Baba (grandmother) to knit him white mittens.  She warns him that if dropped in the snow they will be hard to find. But he still wants them and she makes them for him.  While out playing he drops one of his white mittens.  He continues to play without noticing one of his mittens is gone, but the animals notice and one by one go inside the cozy mitten.  Each animal bigger than the one before goes into the mitten until the biggest of all a bear fits himself in the mitten. By this time the mitten is quite big and very stretched out.  Then a tiny mouse perches herself on the bears nose causing the bear to sneeze and all the animals get shot out of the mitten!  The boy sees the mitten flying up in the air and runs for it. "From the window, Baba watched Nicki catch the mitten.  "See, Baba!" he called to her.  " I have both my mittens." And Baba smiled.

Each page has two mittens drawn on each side that act as a window.  From one you see what the boy is doing and from the other you can see what animal is coming next.  My youngest daughter Emma also likes the flowers and hearts that adorn each page and likes to tell me her favorite one as we read this book together.  This is a fun book that any child will get a good laugh out of!  Share with them the magic of this great folktale and see if they believe that this indeed could happen to one of their mittens!  What a great read for a cold winter day!  Follow the story up by trying to see how many things they can stuff into a mitten or how many stuffed animals they can get to fit.  If they are like my children they have plenty of mini sized stuffed animals just waiting for them to use.

I love the last picture in this book of Baba looking at the stretch out mitten!


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