My pick this week for Perfect Picture Book Fridays is a book one of my favorite author/illustrators, Ezra Jack Keats
Title: Hi, Cat!
Author: Ezra Jack Keats
Publisher: Macmillan Company (1970) Viking Juvenile (1999)
Ages: 3 and up
Themes: Appreciation/Gratitude, Animals, Accidents, Conflict/Resolution
Synopsis: Archie goes to meet his friend Peter (Remember The Snowy Day?)so they can put on a street show for the neighborhood. On his way, he meets a stray cat. The cat ends up following Archie to the show. It proceeds to mess up all of Archie’s plans. But Archie doesn’t get mad. He accepts what happens and sees that the cat just really likes him.
Opening: On his way to meet Peter, Archie saw someone new on the block:
“Hi, cat,” he said as he walked by.
From the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation:
Archie is walking down the street eating an ice cream cone. It’s a beautiful day, and he is on his way to meet his best friend Peter. Suddenly stopped by a newcomer to his neighborhood, Archie says, “Hi, cat!” The cat sits, looks him up and down, and purrs. It turns out to be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Keats’s vibrant palette brings this humorous, fast-paced story to life.
Make your own backyard theater – Here’s some free kids scripts
The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation has a wonderful list of resources for educators
PBS Kids has a lists of plays for kids to have fun with
Why I like this book: I love Ezra Jack Keats of simple storytelling. He lets the reader “fill in the blanks”. I also enjoy his style of illustration. Every book of his that I have read I have loved. He knew how to interpret life in an urban environment and make it interesting and engaging for the reader, no matter what age.
Perfect Picture Book Fridays are a weekly blog event where participants review some of their favorite picture books. The posts are compiled on author Susanna Leonard Hill’s website. They are categorized by theme to help parents, educators and readers find the perfect picture book easily. To learn more, please visit Susanna’s site where you will find the complete PPBF’s library.