If an Elephant Went to School

If an Elephant Went to School

3.89 (128 ratings by Goodreads)
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Would an elephant learn the ABCs if she went to school? No way! She would learn to use her trunk as a nose, a straw, a hand, and a hose!

Through a series of questions and answers, readers learn about animals and their unique behaviors. And in the end, you might find yourself asking just what would you learn.
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Product details

  • 0-5
  • Hardback | 32 pages
  • 204 x 254 x 10.16mm | 341g
  • Scarletta Press
  • MN, United States
  • English
  • 1938063619
  • 9781938063619
  • 1,622,497

Review quote

Finalist for the 2015 USA Best Book Awards in Children's Picture Book: Hardcover Finalist for the Midwest Book Awards in Children's Picture Books "What would an elephant learn at school? 'The ABCs? NO WAY! An elephant would learn to use her trunk as...a nose, a straw, a hand, and a hose!' What about an owl? Would he learn how to count to 100? 'I DON'T THINK SO.' He would learn to clean and groom his feathers with his beak. So goes the pattern for these potential animal pupils--including a zebra, a frog, an eel, a bee, a skunk, a caterpillar, and a platypus. The book offers up some human classroom activities and then explains the kinds of behaviors and actions animals might learn in a classroom setting. Last up is a boy. When he thinks about what he might learn at school, he suggests the intriguing possibility of changing colors like a chameleon. His horrified teacher and classmates shout 'NO WAY!' and the child agreeably acknowledges that he will learn to 'read, write, share, and make friends.' The simple patterned question-and-answer text invites audience participation, and the engaging soft-toned cartoon art is mildly amusing and perfect for group sharing. VERDICT An appealing introduction to the animal world and a subtle entry to education."--Luann Toth, School Library Journal "The book does a precious job of getting very young readers to think about how different creatures have different features and abilities. Paired with non-fiction titles, it can be used as a tool for school-age youth to discuss animals, their natural habitats and unique traits."--Greensboro News & Record, "Gifts for your young readers: Children's librarians offer holiday gift suggestions" "Looking for a fun way to celebrate learning or to introduce a young child to the concept of school? Ellen Fischer's delightful picture book If an Elephant Went to School does just that by introducing an array of lovable animals as students. ... Laura Wood's adorable illustrations are a perfect complement to the humorous text that make you want to grab your lunchbox and head for the yellow bus! At this school, you can share a classroom with colorful bees that make delicious honey, a purple eel that can swim backwards, or a zebra that can sleep standing-up----without a pillow! However, you might want to stay a safe distance from skunk! Mighty Media Kids has published another winner in this companion book to If an Armadillo Went to a Restaurant. It combines fun with a purpose as it introduces children to different animal behaviors while advancing a positive attitude towards learning. A terrific addition to a little one's library!"--The Children's Writer's Guild "...a spunky new back to school story ... entertains while it teaches effortlessly, using contrast between ridiculous ideas and factual observations ... Filled with charming, amusing illustrations and a series of contrasting comparisons, If an Elephant Went to School is perfect for the back to school audience of kids ages 4 and up."--The Midwest Book Review: Children's Bookwatch "... silly and funny. ... This book has great pictures with lots of details and bright colors. I liked that the book has lots of different animals and teaches things that each animal needs to know, like an owl learn to clean his feathers with his beak. My favorite part was the platypus because it is such a neat animal."--Kids' BookBuzz; Jewel, age 7 "This book is a pretty straightforward lesson, perfect for the slightly younger crowd. Not only does it help with what happens at school, but you get some fun animal identification and traits practice in there. Plus, the illustrations are pretty darn cute..."--Literary Hoots "Your little learner will definitely get excited about attending school the next day after reading this book! I would highly recommend it as a back to school gift for someone short and special!"--Diapers & Daydreams "Clever, packed full of colorful illustrations, and a fun read for kids. If you have a little one heading off to school for the first time this fall, this would be an absolutely fabulous little book to share with them!"--The Simple Moms "...offers an opportunity for young children aged 2-6 to become engaged, successful readers who also learn about animal behaviors. ... With playful illustrations that transport the imagination to silly situations young children are sure to be entertained while being unexpectedly educated."--Carrie On "A wonderful read a-loud book that encourages listener participation. With its winsome illustrations, If an Elephant Went to School is a funny, delightful read that children will want to go through on their own after a first reading. I think this charming follow up to If an Armadillo Went to a Restaurant, will have kids wanting to read--or listen to--If an Elephant Went to School several times. Reading this enjoyable, educational, and entirely humorous picture book should not press on any parent's nerve while reading multiple times. If an Elephant Went to School--a truly fun giggle-book--should be a wild bullseye for booksellers."--Kid Lit Reviews "Children will have to be metacognitive throughout the whole reading of this book, constantly questioning and thinking about classroom and animal behaviors, and predicting what will come next in the story. ... If the gorgeous illustrations don't make you want to pick this book up, the undeniably witty and smart words will. Early childhood students will thoroughly enjoy this story and I think it will be a favorite read-aloud."--Laticia Overton, Examiner.com "This is a really cute picture book! I like that it teaches kids about what animals would learn to live a nice life for them. It's funny how it shows the animal in question first in a school environment with other animals doing "normal" things, and then in their natural habitat. I also like how the reader learns synonyms for "no way" throughout the book. Ms. Wood's illustrations are funny, and you seem to catch the enthusiasm that her drawings embody. They go great with Ms. Fischer's writing style, which is of a nice, "imagine that!" kind of attitude. I love the scenarios the animals find themselves in, and the very last pages are totally awesome! I give this book five out of five bookworms!" --This Kid Reviews Books "Not only might some new and interesting animals be introduced to your young readers, but -- wow! So many new verbs (waddle, crawl, scamper) in this text -- such a fantastic vocabulary builder." --Front Porch Librarian "If a child reads Ellen Fischer's new book If an Elephant Went to School, what will he learn? That child will learn lots of unusual and interesting things about animal behaviors. What a fun book to find at a zoo--or anywhere!" --Rod Hansen, Gift Shop Manager at the St. Louis Zoo "Instead of reading a dry text to your PreK-1st grade class, you can have a fun interactive read-aloud experience with adorable illustrations. ... Look at the cover above. It screams to librarians and teachers, 'Put me on display and many kids will grab me!' If you listen carefully, that's exactly what you will hear."--NC Teacher's Stuff "I love the repetitive text this book has, lends not only to a wonderful read aloud experience for children but additionally a mentor text that has writing extension opportunities. Also, there could be a fun research writing extension for younger classes, for example: children could choose another animal to ask a question about and do a little research to share an unique feature of the animal in a rhyming way."--The Styling Librarian "I was immediately charmed and dismayed as I read it. Charmed because the illustration and story are so much fun. Dismayed because I wished I had a copy when my almost three-year-old niece was at my home a few days before. This book is made for three-year-olds. ... The book beautiful captures the similarities and differences we all have and how school could best be structured to suit each person or animal. I think any child would be delighted to read it."--Read, Write, Reflect "This is another super sweet, quirky, silly but FUN installment from Ellen Fischer's series of books. ... If an Elephant went to School is best suited for beginning readers and can be used in lessons for Cause and Effect. It also makes for a perfect read aloud for younger audiences. ... With gentle pacing and simple language, little readers will be thrilled to learn how different animals require different skills for survival."--Stacking Books "Ms. Fischer has just released a second in this series and it is just in time for those little ones going to school -- either for the first time or returning -- If An Elephant Went to School. Frankly, I enjoyed this one even more than the Armadillo story. This is just plain fun. ... Laura Woods is again illustrating this book just as she did the Armadillo book. These animals are full of life, expression, and just down right cute. I like that she uses different tones of color in her illustrations than we normally find in kiddie books. She deviates a bit from basic primary colors and incorporates teals, russets, and variations of browns, greens and oranges. The colors literally pop."--Chat with Vera Reviews for If an Armadillo Went to a Restaurant: "Factual and funny, it's a recipe for reading again and again." --Foreword Reviews "Wood's quirky creatures add to the humor, which might well spur listeners to make up some menus of their own." --Kirkus Reviews As a classroom teacher for over 30 years I am delighted to recommend this book with its endless possibilities for vocabulary development and use of descriptive language in addition to the factual knowledge presented. The clever ending offers a springboard for oral language development as well as writing." -- Ricki Gray, Classroom teacher, Guilford County, NC "Yummy and yucky--the perfect formula for young readers to discover what animals eat. Ellen Fischer's imaginative and informative picture book encourages readers to make mealtime connections between humans and a delightful assortment of creatures craving their favorite foods. A masterful menu of humor, fun, and facts!" -- Betty Hicks, author of The Worm Whisperer
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About Ellen Fischer

Ellen Fischer grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, but has been a North Carolina Tar Heel for over 30 years. She has taught elementary age children for over 20 years and is the mother of three. She is also the author of If an Armadillo Went to a Restaurant, Latke, the Lucky Dog, and several Sesame Street books, including Grover and Big Bird's Passover Celebration, It's a Mitzvah, Grover!, and The Count's Hanukkah Countdown. Laura Wood is a freelance illustrator currently living in England. She was born and raised in Italy and received a Bachelor of Cinema and Multimedia. She likes to combine both digital and traditional dry media to create childlike pictures with a sunny style and a folksy feeling. Laura Wood is also the illustrator for If an Elephant Went to a Restaurant, Lucy in the City, and The Cow Tripped Over the Moon.
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Rating details

128 ratings
3.89 out of 5 stars
5 27% (35)
4 42% (54)
3 23% (30)
2 6% (8)
1 1% (1)
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