In the Small, Small Pond

Title: In the Small, Small Pond

Author(s): Denise Fleming

Illustrator/Photographer: Denise Fleming

Publisher and Year: Henry Holt and Company, 1993

50419475Number of pages: 29

Tags/Themes: Colleen Swanson, Award Book, Animals, Fine Arts, Science, K-1, 2-3

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Descriptive Annotation: This book is centered on a bright green frog in his small, small pond. The story follows the frog for an entire year as the seasons change from spring to summer to fall and then to winter. The text serves as an introduction to the seasons through the eyes of a little green frog. The story begins in summer and ends in winter with the frog traveling all around the pond during each season to take a look at his fellow animals living near or in the pond. Rhyming is utilized throughout the book along with some alliteration as well as onomatopoeias. On each page the text is limited to 4 or 5 words in large font embedded into vivid illustrations. The illustrations in the book look at the pond in several different angles and focus on several different animals living in the pond. The frog is found in each new illustration guiding the book along. Denise Fleming created the illustrations, along with writing the book, by pouring cotton through stencils and then set on handmade paper. The results are very detailed, textured, and grainy depictions of the animal and plant life inhabiting the small, small pond. For this text some brief background knowledge on the seasons may be beneficial to young readers. Also, discussions on the types of animals and plant that live near or in a pond would support the reader greatly prior to reading this book.

Linguistic and Cultural Diversity Analysis: Within this book a young Asian child is the only human character ever illustrated and found on the first page. The story mainly follows the frog and the diverse animal and plant population inhabiting the pond. This book would foster inquiry in students in regards to the all the different types of animals and plant living in or near the pond. Although all the text is written in English, the illustrations seem to have an Asian influence in their appearance.

Interdisciplinary Connections: This text can easily be used to reinforce Life Science content and Biology topics. I may incorporate this lesson into the beginning of a Life Science unit and then have students research the type of living things that inhabit the pond and marsh habitats. This book can also be used to introduce students to the Language Arts elements of alliteration and onomatopoeias. I also see this text working in a Fine Art or Art class due to the interesting and unusual type of illustrations present.

Other Information: I enjoyed this book greatly and can see it being used in the younger elementary grades. I feel as though this text would lose the interest of 4th or 5th graders due to the somewhat basic vocabulary. I would use this book as an introduction to a Science unit on a pond or marsh natural habitat. In addition, I may read this book to my students in Language Arts and have them create their own illustrations for the story from listening to the descriptive words of the text.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply