Picture books promoting family literacy are a favorite of mine, and Andrea Wayne von Königslöw’s How Do You Read to a Rabbit? is particularly adorable and entertaining. Both written and authored by Königslöw, her watercolor and ink illustrations depict a pajama-clad child (who serves equally well as a boy or girl) attempting to read a bedtime story to an assortment of wild animals.
On this journey of the imagination, the child thinks through the difficulties inherent in reading aloud to various types of animals.
“If you read to a book to a boa, she might want to hug you goodnight.”
“It’s even harder to read to a cheetah. You might not be a fast enough reader.”
Moving through 13 types of animals, each page humorously depicts the child earnestly trying to read to the animal(s) despite the presenting difficulties: giraffes who are too tall to see the pictures, chameleons who blend in with the story, and bats who hang upside down. Finally, the child snuggles in between mom and dad in the bed to read them “the best story they’ve ever heard.”
Perfect for preschoolers and early-elementary children who are newly awakened to the delights of reading, I can easily see this title catching on as a classroom read-aloud for Grade One story-times. Book-loving families will also have a lot of fun reading through the humorous scenarios. Königslöw provides build in opportunities for funny vocalizations and dramatic reading in the text, making How Do You Read to a Rabbit? a delight to both read and listen to.
Chosen as a naptime storybook selection today, this brief literacy tale was well received by my assembled children (six, three, one.) My second daughter (on the cusp of turning four, and just starting to learn basic phonetic recognition) is absolutely fascinated by this title. She asked for an instantaneous second reading the moment we closed the book’s pages and enthusiastically expressed her adoration for it. I’m confident that this is a title that will be landing in my lap at story-time on a regular basis.