And the Cow Said Moo! by Mildred Phillips
Geared Towards: Baby-Preschool
Published By: Greenwillow Books
Publication Date: May 2000
Here we have a book that has actually been out for several years (8+ to be exact) that I had never heard of before. That's not to say that I'm aware of every book ever published. However, seeing as I discovered it at the library and we've spent so much time there since my oldest daughter was born 5+ years ago, I found it amazing that I'd never happened across it before. I'm glad though that after all this time it finally found me and me it. What a cute book!
In And the Cow Said Moo! a young calf receives an early morning visit from each of his farm friends. As each animal stops by to say 'hello', cow cries out "Good morning, _________. Say Moo! Say Moo! If I say Moo, why don't you?" Because cow is so young, he doesn't understand that not everyone speaks 'moo'. So each animal visitor explains to cow that it doesn't moo, and then proceeds to show cow what noise it does make. No matter how many animals parade by to greet the calf (there are six in all), he still asks each why they don't moo back to him.
Finally, his last visitor, an owl, explains to the little cow that everybody is different and we all can't be the same. "Now if I said MOO, and you said Whoooo, you'd be me and I'd be you!" The calf is then able to grasp the concept of being different. And as he imagines all of his animal friends mixed up with each other (the wrong heads on the wrong bodies) he realizes the importance of each animal being just as they are.
This book was so much fun to read. From the lilting text to the cheerful and funny illustrations, this is one I want to read over and over again. Not only was it just a cute story in general, but I really felt the author conveyed a great message to her readers. Individual identity is important, and while it's wonderful to be the same as others, you don't always have to be exactly alike. Each of us has our own unique characteristics and tastes which makes life all the more interesting.
Due to the way Phillips wrote each animal's dialog, And the Cow Said Moo! can easily be converted from a normal "one reads while others listen" style book to one that allows audience participation. Both my 2 year old and my 5 year old loved this story, but I think they enjoyed it all the more simply because they got to help call out the animals sounds. For this particular point alone, I would definitely recommend this book for teachers or librarians who want a story to read in a group storytime setting. I personally am hoping to get my hands on my very own copy of this book, and then I'd love to go in and read it to my daughter's kindergarten class. I can hear the excited shouts of participation ringing in my ears already.
OUR RATING: 5 hearts