Beloved Children’s Books Offer Learning Opportunities

April 29, 2022

Allyson Jay

Like many of you, when I was a toddler, I was drawn mainly to picture books, specifically the ones authored by Eric Carle. I cherished the large but simple and colorful illustrations, easy-to-read writing, and most of all, the central theme of animals parading across the white pages of each of his books. When I first learned how to read, the book I gravitated to was “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?” In this book, a single colorful animal fills each page, accompanied by the repeated narration of “What do you see?” along with the response from each animal foreshadowing the next. The animals range from, like the title suggests, a big brown bear and a playful yellow duck to a smiling green frog and a friendly blue horse. My parents would often read this book to me before I was able to, excitedly pointing to each animal, unable to spell out the black letters. Once I did learn to read, it was my go-to book that always put me in a cheery mood and of course, greatly expanded my vocabulary for colors and animals (although I could never pronounce “yellow” or “bird” correctly). And I don’t know why, but my personal favorite was always the blue horse. 

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